Promising Practices Newsletter

Overview

Promising Practices Newsletters

SREB’s Promising Practices Newsletter contains real school and classroom practices from school leaders, teachers and other featured speakers who presented at our annual Making Schools Work Conference and the College- and Career-Readiness Standards Networking Conference.

Each newsletter contains helpful information from schools that are successfully implementing SREB’s Key Practices for the middle grades, high schools and technology centers as well as the names and email addresses of practitioners you can contact to learn more.

To receive email notifications when new newsletters are published, please subscribe here: mailchi.mp/sreb.org/promisingpractices.

Publication By Diane James, SREB, and Kim Livengood, SREBVolume 1, Issue 11March 13, 2020

There’s Power in Struggle
Promising Practices from the 2019 College- and Career-Readiness Standards Networking Conference

Picture of newsletter cover“No one goes into education and into teaching to sit back and watch kids struggle,” says Tara Faircloth, the director of curriculum and instruction for the Caesar Rodney School District in Wyoming, Delaware. “It’s part of our nature to want to help,” she adds.

Publication By Jahana Martin, SREBVolume 1, Issue 10February 28, 2020

Shaking Things Up With Coding in Core Classes
Promising Practices from the 2019 Making Schools Work Conference

newsletter cover Coding is the act of writing a set of instructions that a computer understands so it will perform a task. Learning to code can help improve soft skills, also known as 21st-century skills or employability skills, that lead to success in the classroom or the workforce. Among other skills, coding builds students’ capacity to analyze data, design creative solutions to problems and collaborate in teams.

Publication By Diane James, SREB, and Richard Morrison, SREBFebruary 14, 2020Volume 1, Issue 9

Taking School Improvement to the Next Level With a Needs Assessment
Promising Practices from the 2019 Making Schools Work Conference

Newsletter coverWoodlawn High School in Birmingham, Alabama, is an urban school on a journey of transitioning from a culture of underperformance to one in which teachers and students are empowered to take ownership of learning and academic growth.

Publication January 30, 2020By Diane James, SREBVolume 1, Issue 8

Highlights From a Few of Our Featured Speakers
Promising Practices from the 2019 Making Schools Work Conference

The Opportunity Myth: How School Is Letting Students Down and How to Fix It

Classrooms are filled with students whose big goals for their lives are slipping away each day.

“That’s because we’ve been telling them that doing well in school creates opportunities — that showing up, doing the work and meeting teachers’ expectations will prepare them for their futures,” notes a report from TNTP (formerly The New Teacher Project). TNTP calls this gap between students’ goals and the messages we send them, “the opportunity myth.”

Publication January 15, 2020Jahana Martin, SREB, and Joe Tadlock, SREBVolume 1, Issue 7

Choosing the Edtech That Fits
Promising Practices from the 2019 Making Schools Work Conference

Picture of newsletter cover Have you wondered if the education technology you’re using is right for your classroom, or whether you should be incorporating technology into your classroom? Educators can use technology as a tool to facilitate learning best practices and differentiating instruction, say Carl Robinson, Calvin Moore and Terrika Oliver of Richmond County School System in Augusta, Georgia.

Publication December 13, 2019Diane James, SREBVolume 1, Issue 6

Increase Graduation Rates Among African American Males
Promising Practices from the 2019 Making Schools Work Conference

Picture of newsletterMcKinley Vocational High School in Buffalo, New York, beats the odds when it comes to graduating African American males. Nationwide, research shows the graduation rate for black males is 59 percent — the lowest of any population in the country.

But at McKinley, the four-year graduation rate for African American males reached 87 percent in 2017 — more than 20 percentage points higher than the New York State average of 63 percent. The school’s five-year graduation rate for black males is 90 percent. A lot of credit goes to principal Marck Abraham, who took over the reins as principal in the 2016-17 school year after serving as assistant principal there.

Publication November 15, 2019Diane James, SREBVolume 1, Issue 5

Taking the Bias Out of Teacher Evaluations
Promising Practices From the 2019 Making Schools Work Conference

 An evaluation system that fosters a growth mindset and truly improves teaching and learning is something teachers and administrators can get excited about. Such a system is not tied to the stress of determining teachers’ pay raises but instead results in feedback that is linked to effective teaching and students’ mastery of standards.

Publication October 30, 2019Kirsten Sundell, SREBVolume 1, Issue 4

Mobile Career Counseling — Thinking Outside the Schoolhouse
Promising Practices From the 2019 Making Schools Work Conference

Leaders and instructors at James Rumsey Technical Institute in Martinsburg, West Virginia, are justifiably proud of their Mobile Career Center.

This 53’ custom-built, multi-module lab space brings career exploration and awareness of JRTI’s college- and career- ready programs to youth and adults across a large region of West Virginia.

Publication October 15, 2019Jahana Martin, SREBVolume 1, Issue 3

Real World Communications: A 21st-Century Elective
Promising Practices From the 2019 Making Schools Work Conference

Create electives focused on increasing college and career readiness. This was the task for educators at Bellevue High School in Bellevue, Ohio. Jennifer Mercer, an English language arts and dual enrollment teacher, had a vision – design an elective that is student-led, teaches 21st-century skills and meets state learning standards.

Mercer wanted this elective to empower each student to become a better communicator and develop leadership skills. Her idea was inspired by a proposed speech class that evolved to include technical writing and social media writing and culminated in a real-world communications class.

Publication September 30, 2019Kirsten Sundell, SREBVolume 1, Issue 2

Transforming an Old Shop Class Into a 21st-Century Hands-On STEAM Lab
Promising Practices From the 2019 Making Schools Work Conference

Two years ago, Demopolis City Schools took a hard look at its vision for college and career ready graduates and realized that the needs of students and the area workforce were not being met.

DCS is in Alabama’s Black Belt, a region once known for its rich soil but now marked by poverty. This city district serves 2,300 students – two-thirds of whom receive free or reduced-price lunch – and comprises four campuses.

Publication September 16, 2019Diane James, SREBVolume 1, Issue 1

Educating Students Who Have Experienced Trauma
Promising Practices From the 2019 Summer Conferences

Most teachers have students in their classrooms right now who have experienced trauma and are acting out in class because of it. The impact of trauma can be far-reaching and long-lasting and affect students’ ability to succeed in school and in life. Teachers benefit from learning how to recognize trauma and deal with it effectively.

Publication March 15, 2017 11 pages17Vo8w

Making Schools Relevant and Students Better Prepared for Postsecondary Studies and Careers
Best Practices From the 2016 HSTW Staff Development Conference

This newsletter explores ways to prepare students with the foundational literacy and math skills needed in postsecondary studies and the workplace. It also highlights the significance of schools having an effective guidance system that prepares students for college and helps them discover their interests, aptitudes and compatible career choices.

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