Curriculum and School Improvement


Advanced Career

A new approach to career and technical education that combines college-readiness academics with hands-on, project-based assignments focused on modern careers. Advanced Career helps prepare students for as many options as possible after high school: a high-value job, college, community college or technical school. 

Arkansas participation in AC programs, 2016-17:

  • Informatics: 1 school
  • Innovations in Science and Technology: 1 school
  • Integrated Production Technologies: 1 school
  • Teachers trained: 1

Donald Westerman of Fountain Lake Charter High School in Hot Springs, was honored in July 2017 with an Outstanding Advanced Career Administrator award. >

Readiness Courses:
Math Ready and Literacy Ready

Courses specifically designed to help underprepared students succeed in the next phase of education. 

Ready for college

Courses to teach young adults the reading, writing and math skills they must have to succeed in college. Taught in an engaging way that leads students to learn and think independently, read for information and solve problems.

In 2015-16, 45 Arkansas teachers from 38 schools participated in training for the courses, and a similar number will participate in summer 2017. 

SREB compared ACT scores of about 550 students in Arkansas and Mississippi to their scores before they took the courses. At Little Rock Central High School, two-thirds of the 94 students with before- and after- ACT scores improved their math score; 61 percent improved their science score; and 69 percent improved their ACT composite score. The typical gains: two or more points in math, three or more points in science and two or more points on the composite. 


In July 2017, Phil Wesson of Sheridan High School was honored with the Outstanding Math Ready Teacher award.

In July 2016, SREB honored two Arkansas teachers with Outstanding Literacy Ready Teacher awards for their roles in helping Arkansas schools adopt Literacy Ready.

  • Jennifer Garner, Lakeside High School, played an integral role in the creation of Literacy Ready and its implementation across the nation, serving as a teacher, writer, mentor and master trainer.
  • Dana Smith, Fountain Lake Charter High School, as taught Literacy Ready since its pilot and served as trainer and mentor to help implement Literacy Ready in schools across the nation. 

Arkansas was an early adopter of transitional courses thanks to state legislation. 

Ready for high school

New courses for the transition from middle grades to high school. Underprepared students take the classes in eighth or ninth grade.

Arkansas is one of five states piloting Ready for High School Literacy and Ready for High School Math in the 2016-17 school year. Arkansas teachers also participated in developing, field testing and reviewing the new courses. >

Technology Centers That Work

Helps shared-time centers produce high-demand, high-wage graduates. SREB provides staff development, technical assistance, publications and assessment services. The network includes almost 200 sites in 18 states.

Active centers in Arkansas in 2015-16: 8 >

Counseling for Careers

Awakens students to career goals and connects them to the high school and postsecondary programs of study to succeed in them. SREB offers workshops, materials and coaching for districts, schools and technology centers, which then involve teachers, counselors, administrators, parents and community partners.

SREB conducted professional development sessions with 24 Arkansas districts.