NC Board of Education to vote on 10-point grading scale
Wake County school leaders who’ve been pushing for the state to switch to a 10-point scale for high school grading could get their wish today. As noted in today’s Charlotte Observer article by Andrew Dunn, the State Board of Education is scheduled to vote today on switching the state’s public high schools from a seven-point grading scale to a 10-point scale. It’s a change that the state’s biggest districts have been clamoring for to help make North Carolina students applying for college more competitive with peers in districts that already use the 10-point scale.
Cathy Moore, Wake’s deputy superintendent for school performance, said in the article that both the district staff and the school board are in favor of the change.
“I think what you want to focus on is student learning and students being ready for the next level, whatever it might be,” Moore said, noting that most colleges use the 10-point scale.
An example for the change is that a student who has a 91 in all his classes would have a 4.0 GPA on a 10-point scale but a 3.0 GPA on a seven-point scale.
If approved, it would begin with high school freshmen in the 2015-16 school year. The change would go hand-in-hand with one made by the State Board in August to reduce the academic weight of Advanced Placement and Honors courses.
Click here for the executive summary of the proposed change to the 10-point scale. Click here to view how the policy would be amended.
CIS Cape Fear Receives Nearly $52,000 as AT&T Contributes to Helping Kids Stay in School WILMINGTON — Efforts to keep local students connected to a positive future got a boost recently, as AT&T, which has been connecting people for well over century, delivered nearly $52,000 in contributions to Communities In Schools of Cape Fear (CIS). John Lyon, AT&T Regional Director, was joined by state Rep. Rick Catlin (R-Wilmington) and New Hanover County Commissioner Chairman Woody White in presenting two checks totaling $51,875 at CIS’ annual fundraising breakfast. One contribution, for $9,500, supports collaboration between CIS and the AT&T Aspire Mentoring Academy for a mentoring program for high school students. The program brings students to AT&T work locations, where they meet with AT&T managers to learn about job skills needed in today’s workplace and to be mentored in preparation for job interviews. Trialed in May 2013 in Wilmington and three other locations across the country, the program is now rolling out nationwide. This $9,500 contribution supports the 2013/14 school year program in the Cape Fear area. Catlin, an engineer, has taken part in several mentoring sessions, sharing with the students the job skills needed for success as a small business owner and engineer. “Communities In Schools is providing a valuable service to our area youth,” he said. “Providing these students with a face-to-face opportunity to meet with area business leaders to discuss job skills and their career aspirations, and to prepare them in basic job application and interviewing skills, will go a long way in giving these students additional motivation and direction for their future success.” The second contribution, for $42,375, provided full funding for 1 year of a CIS Site Coordinator position at Williston Middle School. Site Coordinators are responsible for providing sustained intervention services to students who have been identified as being at-risk to provide those students with services such as tutoring, mentoring, literacy skills, career guidance and counseling to assist in their continued growth in the school system. “It is so important for our County schools to be able to have as many resources as possible to assist our students in wanting to graduate and to succeed in their life’s goals,” White said. “Having an organization like CIS, and their Site Coordinators, on premise in our schools with this program provides many at-risk students with additional mentoring and guidance which can lead to their future success in life.” CIS Executive Director Louise Hicks said “CISCF works in partnership with public schools to identify and connect students, many in jeopardy of dropping out, with the community resources they need to stay engaged in school. We offer programs in After School, Non-Traditional Learning, Teen Parenting and Dropout Prevention. Having community leaders like Representative Catlin and County Commissioner White cognizant of, and participating in, our programming is extremely valuable in our being able to fulfill this mission.” Lyon said AT&T has a long history of supporting education, with an emphasis on dropout prevention programs such as CIS. “We understand that there is no better way to make a lasting difference in the community than by helping support the education of its young people,” he said. “That’s why we are excited about the opportunity to work with CIS to help high school students better understand and embrace opportunities which lie before...
Read an article on Communities In Schools’ integrated student services model in the summer 2013 issue of the Stanford Social Innovation Review (SSIR). “Keeping Kids in School,” appears in the ‘What Works’ column. The award-winning magazine, written for and by leaders in the nonprofit, business and government sectors, covers academic theory and practical ideas for achieving social change. Published at the Stanford Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society at Stanford University, SSIR views collaboration as key to solving environmental, social and economic justice issues. The article details how Communities In Schools uses a mix of hard data (research and evaluation) and soft skills (caring site coordinators) to reduce dropout rates and improve graduation rates. Read the complete article...
CISCF Partners with AT&T Aspire Mentoring Program Communities In Schools of Cape Fear Partners with AT&T to Help Prepare Local High School Students for College, Careers Wilmington (NC) – Wilmington-area high school students are getting a first-hand look at career opportunities beyond high school, thanks to a new initiative from Communities In Schools of Cape Fear (CIS) and AT&T’s Aspire Mentoring Academy. More than 30 students from New Hanover High School and the Mary Mosley Performance Learning Center will meet with AT&T employees at the company’s New Center Drive store to learn about careers in the telecommunications industry, as well as practice interviewing skills and discuss life goals, beginning with the importance of high school graduation as a foundation for future successes. “In today’s digital economy, education is essential,” said state Sen. Thom Goolsby (R-Wilmington). “And a key milestone in a young person’s educational journey is their high school diploma. I am pleased to see this initiative by Communities In Schools, which is literally changing the lives of these students.” “The issue of high school dropouts is important because when a student gives up on their education, they are giving up on their future,” said state Rep. Rick Catlin (R-Wilmington). “When businesses with a commitment to corporate citizenship come together with organizations like CIS in supporting the work and dedication of educators, they are helping protect one of our most precious resources: the talents and abilities of our children.” The mentoring opportunity AT&T and Communities In Schools of Cape Fear are providing in Wilmington, is just one of several pilots underway nationwide that are designed to broaden students’ awareness about future career opportunities. Through Aspire Mentoring Academy, AT&T is helping to raise high school graduation rates with the goal to provide students 1 million hours of mentoring by AT&T employees through the end of 2016. AT&T has awarded a grant of $17,628 to provide partial funding for a CIS site coordinator position, in addition to the contribution to the mentoring program. “We understand that there is no better way to make a lasting difference in the community than by helping support the education of its young people,” said John Lyon, Regional Director of External Affairs for AT&T North Carolina. “That’s why we are excited about the opportunity to work with CIS to help high school students better understand and embrace opportunities which lie before them. We hope the students will leave this experience inspired to complete high school and equipped with the knowledge they will need to succeed in college, the workplace and beyond.” “We are thrilled to have the support of both Senator Goolsby and Representative Catlin as we work to help keep students in school and prepare for life,” said Louise Hicks, Executive Director for Communities In Schools of Cape Fear. “We look forward to growing this mentoring program and helping our students to discover a variety of employment opportunities within AT&T, as well as the educational pathways needed in order for them to realize success.” CIS brings a unique model of integrated student services to dropout-prevention efforts. CIS positions a dedicated staff member, a school-based Site Coordinator, to work with school staff to identify students at risk of falling behind or not graduating, to assess a student’s individual needs and to establish relationships with local businesses,...
Washington, DC – Communities In Schools, the nation’s leading organization dedicated to empowering students to stay in school and achieve in life, today released the results of a fiveyear comprehensive longitudinal evaluation, conducted by one of the nation’s foremost social science evaluation firms. After five years of detailed evaluation underwritten by The Atlantic Philanthropies, the evaluation concluded that Communities In Schools’ model resulted in the strongest reduction in dropout rates of any existing fully scaled dropout prevention program that has been evaluated; that Communities In Schools is unique in having an effect on both reducing dropout rates and increasing graduation rates; and that the Communities In Schools model is effective across states, school settings, grade levels and student ethnicities. Importantly, analyses indicate that the more fully and carefully the model is implemented, the stronger the effects. The study, the largest and most comprehensive evaluation of dropout prevention programs ever completed, was designed with eight distinct interlocking phases, including: · An implementation study that examined results from 1,766 Communities In Schools sites nationwide; · A quasi-experimental study that compared results from 602 Communities In Schools sites against 602 matched sites without a Communities In Schools presence; · A “deep dive” study of 368 Communities In Schools sites to identify best practices; and · Three randomized controlled trials, the gold standard in social science evaluation, studying 573 students at nine sites. “This comprehensive, multi-level multi-method study has provided important information about the effectiveness of the Communities In Schools approach, and I am pleased that Communities In Schools is using the findings to make their model consistent and strong across hundreds of sites,” commented Kristin Moore, Ph.D., senior scholar, Child Trends, and member, Communities In Schools National Evaluation Advisory Committee. In comparing the results to over 1,600 studies screened by the Department of Education’s What Works Clearinghouse, the evaluation concluded that the Communities In Schools model is associated with the strongest reduction in dropout rates among all existing fully scaled dropout prevention programs in the United States. Specific findings included: · Communities In Schools’ positive effect on both dropout rates and graduation rates is unique among dropout prevention programs; · The higher the level of fidelity to the Communities In Schools model, the greater the effects, which validates the power of the model; · Positive effects accrued to schools across states, settings (urban, suburban, rural), grade levels and ethnicities; and · The Austin randomized controlled trial, which demonstrated a reduction in student dropout rates that was nearly three times the What Works Clearinghouse’s threshold for “substantively important” effects. “The Communities In Schools model is a powerful tool to help turn around low performing schools. In partnership with teachers, principals and superintendents, Communities In Schools is achieving impressive results in some of the most economically disadvantaged areas of our country,” said Dan Domenech, executive director, American Association of School Administrators. The results from the evaluation are already being translated into improved service delivery by Communities In Schools local affiliates. Based on the mid-point results from the Implementation Study and the Quasi-Experimental Study, Communities In Schools codified a set of program and business standards that the research revealed had the greatest effect on student improvement, and then drove those practices back into the network through an accreditation process. Approximately 108 affiliates have been accredited...