East Baton Rouge Parish School System
East Baton Rouge, Louisiana
With its concrete slabs, flat roof, and retrofitted spaces, the Sherwood Middle Academic Magnet School facility is the antithesis of the life within. Spend five minutes inside and you are witness to a community of high-expectations and vibrant and well-designed learning opportunities.
Drawing from 35 of the district’s 45 elementary schools, Sherwood serves students who meet academic requirements for participation in this middle school magnet program. Of Sherwood’s more than 700 enrolled students, approximately two-thirds are African American and slightly less than one-third are Caucasian. Roughly half of the students qualify for free or reduced-price lunch. The school exceeded state-mandated growth targets for three consecutive years, ranking the third-highest performing middle school in the state. Sherwood is one of eight schools in the district to achieve National Blue Ribbon School distinction.
Now in her 13th year at Sherwood, Principal Phyllis Crawford is the school’s lead engineer and conductor. A teacher at heart, she is credited by parents, staff, and students for the school’s success and well-being. Adept at recognizing and developing the talents of others, she shares both leadership and accountability. Her vision of a community of learners, rigorous curriculum and instruction, and academic, social, and behavioral supports that enable students to reach high standards is realized daily. NBRS program staff created four videos about Sherwood: “Hire Well”, on staffing, A Learning Community on professional collaboration, A Rigorous, Well-Rounded Curriculum, on course offerings, and Student Support, on behavioral and academic interventions for students.