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“PREPARING ALL STUDENTS FOR COLLEGE AND WORK”: Alliance for Excellent Education Selects Presenters for Its 2008-09 High School Achievement Forum Series

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"The High School Achievement Forum series will demonstrate that, while there is a crisis in many of America's high schools, there are solutions."

Earlier this month, the Alliance for Excellent Education announced the six presentations that it has chosen for its upcoming High School Achievement Forum series, titled “Preparing All Students for College and Work.” The presentations, which were chosen from open-call proposals, will take place over a twelve-month period beginning this fall.

“The High School Achievement Forum series will demonstrate that, while there is a crisis in many of America’s high schools, there are solutions,” said Bob Wise, president of the Alliance for Excellent Education and former governor of West Virginia. “The Alliance has identified successful, replicable programs that are improving student outcomes and the quality of education. It is our hope that this series will help policymakers and the public understand that change is possible and inspire them to support meaningful high school reform.”

The presentations reflect a variety of strategies to improve the nation’s secondary schools and ensure that students are college- and work-ready when they graduate. They include the following:

  • An overview of the Stanford University School Redesign Network and a presentation on its implementation by American Institutes of Research. Additionally, principals from Construction Tech Academy in San Diego and the School for International Business of the San Diego School District will speak about their experiences implementing this model in their respective schools.
  • A focus on Performance Learning Centers (PLCs), the signature initiative of Communities in Schools. PLCs are small, nontraditional high schools designed for students who have not experienced success in traditional high schools.
  • An exploration of collaborations between school districts and colleges by examining the Gates Foundation’s Early College High School Initiative and by taking a look at Gateway to College, a promising model for dropout recovery that creates partnerships between school districts and community colleges.
  • The impact of the Cumulative Effect Initiative on recruiting and training math teachers in low-performing schools in Guilford County, NC.
  • An exploration of state-level Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) and Career and Technical Education (CTE) initiatives by presenters from the National Association of State Directors and Project Lead the Way (PLTW). PLTW is a national organization that promotes pre-engineering and biomedical science courses for middle and high school students.
  • Research presented by the University of Minnesota and the University of Connecticut on the development and implementation of two dropout prevention programs that could be especially effective for keeping special education students in school: Check & Connect, an empirically validated model, and Positive Behavioral Interventions and Support (PBIS), a research-based intervention.

Dates, times, and locations for each session will be announced later this summer.

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