At the February meeting of the New Bedford School Committee, Superintendent Dr. Pia Durkin provided an update regarding the work of the New Bedford High School Redesign Team and announced two meetings at which she will meet with parents to talk about the high school turnaround plan.
As a follow-up to recent meetings with students, the Superintendent will hold two parent meetings at the New Bedford High School Family Engagement Center at 2:30 p.m. on Thursday, February 27, 2014 and at 6:00 p.m. on Monday, March 3, 2014.
Superintendent Durkin strongly encouraged parents of NBHS students to attend one of the upcoming meetings, “I very much would like to meet with you to talk to you about the future of New Bedford High School,” said Superintendent Durkin.
In additional remarks, the Superintendent added, “Our success depends on everyone at every level working together toward common goals. That means we need parents to be partners alongside teachers, administrators, and indeed, students themselves.”
Translators will be on hand to assist with the Spanish, Portuguese and Cape Verdean Creole languages.
The Superintendent also praised the work of the New Bedford High School Redesign Team, a team of sixteen high school teachers who have volunteered to help spearhead the redesign of New Bedford High School. The Redesign Team is tackling a number of specific action items including:
- Reviewing the graduation requirements and making recommendations to ensure NBHS students have the same requirements as other students and better positioning them to attain post secondary opportunities.
- Researching potential career pathways and building clear articulation agreements with institutions of higher learning including Bristol Community College and others that enable students to receive college credit for certain high school coursework.
- Developing a student interest survey which will be distributed to NBHS students to solicit their feedback and help determine which courses are of great interest as well as those they would like an opportunity to enroll in.
- Reviewing the school’s existing program of studies and examining its scope and sequence to ensure it is both rigorous and that students are taking courses in the correct order leading up to their graduation.
- Discussing the new Advisory Program in which each student will be assigned a staff member along with a small cohort of fellow students for their four-year high school journey. They will focus on supports that will keep them on track academically and share advice on making the best choices that will enhance the culture of the school and sustain a safe, productive learning environment for all who attend and work at NBHS.
- Reviewing the scope of the potential two-week summer academy for rising 8th graders that will prepare them for a successful freshman year. The academy would focus on mathematics, writing, and the necessary skills to help navigate the early months of high school and beyond. The academy would culminate with a student work showcase and a local trip experience to celebrate this new phase of the student’s educational career.