Monday, December 16, 2013

High School Updates: Thoughts from BVP High School Designer Jonathan Santos Silva

Last week, I had the great pleasure of meeting with BVP families from Central Falls, Cumberland, Lincoln, and Pawtucket on our High School Information tour! We met around kitchen counters, on sofas, and in a public library to discuss topics as varied as Advanced Placement courses, interscholastic athletics, and college counseling. There is a lot to be excited about and many questions yet to be answered, but the true value of these sessions for me has been to experience firsthand the energy and excitement of our families.

According to a report entitled A New Wave of Evidence, "When schools, families, and community groups work together to support learning, children tend to do better in school, stay in school longer, and like school more." Scholars with engaged families are also more likely to earn better grades, enroll in higher-level programs, and go on to post-secondary education. As one parent mentioned this Saturday, family engagement often starts very high at the elementary level only to dwindle as scholars get older. I embarked on this series of sessions to inform our families, and I am leaving with a commitment to engage them from now through high school graduation. 

Many of my updates end with the phrase "All in for Day 1," alluding to opening day of the high school. After completing our first week of  family engagement activities, maybe the better call to action is "All in for Day 1,460!"

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