Hello, I currently serve in a 90/90 building. That means 90 percent poverty and over 90 percent minority. We have moved from Academic Emergency which is and (F) to Effective which in Ohio is a (B) rating. Our staff deserves all the credit, as they teach the subjects. I am only the principal at the school. We have used a very non traditional approach in making these academic gains. We believed we could change the culture and the climate of the students, staff, and parents with three very simple steps. 1). We changed the expectations: All students can and will learn more than they currently know. 2.) Expectations are changed by changing the exposure of our students: Our students will visit a minimum of 5 colleges in and or out of our area per year. 3.) We designed priority lists and asked the Rick Dufour questions What do you want them to learn? How will you know they have learned it? What are we doing for those who have and have not learned the content? We established a partnership with the Youthcivicleadership institute in New York, check out www.youthcivicleadership.org.
We posted all teacher and student test scores from previous years and designed bar graphs for growth, once we had baseline data. We used power standards and vertical alignment of subjects by grades. If you our your district is struggling to close the gaps between your subgroups and in need of assistance please visit our website at the www.ccsdistrict.org and look under Our Schools: Hartford Middle School. We'll keep the lights on, as they would say at Motel 6. In some cities African American males are graduating at rates below 30% and the achievement gaps between the all students and the special education and african american groups are staggering. These gaps can be closed and we are willing to share what works.
You can view our journey from being closed in April 2011 to being ranked Effective in August 2011. Our data can be viewed at www.ode.state.oh.us under local report cards Canton City Schools: Hartford Middle School. We can also be viewed by going to the Canton Repository and view articles on Hartford Middle School.
We must use the imagination, tools, and practices that encourage the mind, heart and body. You change expectations by changing exposure.
Thank you Verizon for making us a Verizon STEM grant project school.
Mr. Sandy D. Womack Jr., M.Ed
doctoral student at Ashland University
330 453-6012 ext. 2205