Category: School Processes and Practice

Performing To Our Potential

June 19, 2013 by
Jesse Moyer

Jesse Moyer

This week, I had the pleasure of meeting with the folks at the Boston Day and Evening Academy (BDEA) in Roxbury, MA.  I always enjoy visiting with practitioners and students, as they offer great insights into what’s working and what isn’t, something I don’t always get in my own day-to-day activities.

Two things struck me about my visit and I want to write about both of them.  The first thing that became very obvious early in the visit is how wonderfully simplistic their model is.  They begin with the standards — once the Massachusetts state standards, and now the Common Core State Standards — and unpack the set of standards into more accessible competencies that are easily understood by students, parents, and teachers.  From those competencies, they create course-specific benchmarks that students must meet in order to earn the distinction of being competent or highly competent in a given course.  Students are assessed upon enrollment in BDEA to determine “where they are,” an individual education plan is created for each student, and each student is given the time, resources, and support they need to become competent in the material.  I don’t mean to suggest that the work of unpacking standards and creating competencies is simple…to be sure, it isn’t.  But the model itself is simple and completely logical; something I think we can all agree is sometimes missing from our education system today. (more…)

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