AOE Site Visit

AOE Fall Site Visit today. Combined with our school’s open house this evening in the heavy rains, that made for another >12 hour day. Tomorrow I’m promising myself <9 hours (shooting for a standard 8 hour workday, but promising <9).

Encouraged by some of the feedback from our site visit. We have continued to make progress as an AOE in all four areas (academy development, curriculum/instruction, advisory board, & work-based learning). We’ve put a lot of pieces in place that are helping our students. Still have more work to do in every area, but solid progress has occurred. Some is thanks to me, but much is thanks to our awesome team of teachers, or thanks to our terrific industry partners.

While impressed with that progress, the major piece that is still not in place is the AOE as a small learning community within the larger high school. With common planning time built into the school day for our AOE teachers (by grade). Including a pure academy model where students stay with academy teachers for all subjects and don’t go to other academies except for electives or rare offerings (e.g. AP calculus). Not because other academies’ teachers suck, but because our AOE teachers will collaborate and make connections around engineering, and because our AOE teachers will meet and collaborate around improving education for our shared students. Right now there is lots of cross-academy teaching, which doesn’t fit in with the AOE model.

If this were to fall into place, it would make much of what we are doing for AOE so much easier, and make some things possible that are not currently possible. With the new principal and new leadership team, today was really their first in-depth introduction about the goals of the NAF/AOE model. So here’s hoping that we will have a commitment to work along these lines for next year.

Anyway, I apologize for errors of grammar and sentence fragments and such. I usually proofread for you, but not tonight. Need some sleep now. :^)

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