WORKING IN NEW START SCHOOLS
New Start provides professional development for all teachers focused on high payoff, research-based instructional strategies from day one. In the first two years, the most visible, intensive changes will take place with 9th and 10 graders as we engage them in a new, accelerated curriculum. Meanwhile, 11th and 12th graders will immediately begin seeing increased opportunities for college courses, internships and mentorships. By the third year of our engagement with the school, students will have a completely new set of courses, supports and community learning opportunities available to them.
New Start high schools are designed so that 100 percent of students have the opportunity to participate in early college experiences. This can range from seminars on partner colleges and universities and college visits to earning college credit through advanced placement courses, dual credit courses and completion of college courses. We recommend all students, in grades 9-12 be allowed to choose the academy they'd like to attend.
New Start Schools are heavily focused on challenging traditional leadership styles and systems. School-based and district-level curriculum leaders take part in a year of intense professional development focused on transformation. This also serves as a learning laboratory for leaders as all stakeholders change district-wide and school-level policies, practices and resource allocation while designing and implementing multiple, great high schools in the same facility.
All New Start academies will provide a rigorous, college preparatory curriculum aligned with the Common Core and national standards. Students will graduate with a minimum of:
- English 9-12, with a heavy emphasis on writing
- Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2 (minimum for all students); Recommend the addition of Calculus or Trigonometry
- Biology, Chemistry, Physics (minimum for all students); recommend Chemistry II or additional life science
- A minimum of 3 years of Social Sciences
- A minimum of 2 years of foreign language, with 3 years recommended
- A minimum of one credit of fine or performing arts required for all students. Some designs support additional courses in the arts.
- Dual enrollment and other innovative partnerships expand course offerings for students.
- At least one credit of health and physical education, with the majority of designs incorporating additional units of physical education.
All courses will be taught in a very integrated way, organized around annual “big ideas” or “themes.” All schools are designed to be implemented in technology-rich environments, and deeply connected with local community and business organizations.