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Sierra School Sierra Expeditionary Learning School Truckee, CA In 2008, in a small town in northern California, a dozen or so parents of preschoolers started dreaming about a different kind of elementary school and chartered SELS—the Sierra Expeditionary Learning School, in Truckee, California in March 2010. This podcast features Kim Bradley, a founding parent and current board Read More

 Hearts and Minds features Pinewood Elementary School in Jenison, MI, a suburb of Grand Rapids, where teachers and staff found themselves dealing with extreme student behaviors that disrupted learning. When Principal Rachael Postle-Brown and her staff adopted a “Whole School” approach to supporting positive student behaviors, a host of benefits followed. The approach has Read More

Photo of Pep Rally University Academy—Upper School University Academy—Upper School Kansas City, MO University Academy Upper School is a 9-12 high school located in Kansas City, Missouri and is on a mission to prepare students, not only for college admission, but also for college success. With a high school graduation rate of 100%, this mission-focused public charter high school located in an Read More

Photo of Skyland Elementary School – Greer, SC  Teaching with Art and Heart highlights the resources a dedicated principal has secured for the 700-plus students in her rural South Carolina school, Skyland Elementary. For more than two decades, Dr. Carolyn Styles has created a thriving community of passionate educators and young scholars. In addition to identifying and remediating students’ educational gaps and Read More

White Street School in Springfield, MA In order to spread knowledge of innovative and successful school practices, the National Blue Ribbon Schools program profiles a number of schools from each year’s cohort. Stories are added as they are produced. Still Making the Grade showcases the Brooklyn (NY) School for Global Scholars, P.S. 748. Originally designed as a district-based application school for Read More

PS 748  Still Making the Grade showcases the Brooklyn (NY) School for Global Scholars, P.S. 748. Originally designed as a district-based application school for gifted and talented students, P.S. 748 featured a self-created and evolving curriculum that used project-based learning and departmentalized, interdisciplinary learning to prepare global citizens for the future. It opened in 2010. Two Read More

White Street School in Springfield, MA Game Changer tells the story of struggling White Street School in Springfield, MA, where “demographics” had been the steady explanation for low student achievement. Families were reluctant to send their children to a school were only 4% of fifth graders scored Proficient in any subject. In 2010, the State Education Department had singled the school Read More

Photo of Massapequa High School Massapequa High School (Massapequa, NY). Massapequa High School encourages staff members to learn from one another. For instance, currently the teachers participate in a “Pineapple Chart” process where they open-up their classrooms, announce lesson subjects via a posting board, and welcome colleagues to visit. These activities impact students as they witness staff professional growth efforts, Read More

Photo of Fishing Cove Elementary School Fishing Cove Elementary School (North Kingstown, RI). At Fishing Cove, professional development addresses student behavior, both inside and outside of school. Two years ago, the school dedicated a large amount of professional development funds to train every teacher, teacher assistant, and all specialist educators in Open Circle. This training increased the school’s capacity to support Read More

Photot of Grove Valley Elementary Grove Valley Elementary (Edmond, OK). As the lowest in General Fund funding of any school district in Oklahoma, Grove Valley must be very creative and purposeful when it comes to professional development. Each week, the faculty meets for Late Start Wednesday – a district-designated one-hour time slot. During this time, teachers participate in Professional Learning Read More

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