Wednesday, July 1, 2015

BVP High School Part 3: Student Engagement, Ownership & Mastery

by Jessica Waters, BVP Board Member & 2013 Rhode Island Teacher of the Year

I am as excited today as I was in June of 2013 to be part of the Blackstone Valley Prep Board of Directors. I am honored to be part of a team that is constantly striving to improve opportunities for all scholars, so it is not surprising  that BVP High School will be embarking on this unique journey, which I believe will even further skyrocket the success of scholars.

As a classroom teacher I struggled to truly differentiate learning for all students. On my best day I could reach and push 5 kids, admittedly leaving some kids either bored or too challenged to be engaged. In my last few years in the classroom it was only through experimenting with technology that I got to a place of bliss. I used technology to create a personalized learning environment where I was able to meet all kids where they were, pushing them to achieve at their personal best. It was not about the technology--it was about the personalization, likewise for BVP High School.

Partnering with Summit Public Schools allows BVP to use their best practices and collaborate with educators across the country and right here in RI with a high school part of  Pawtucket School District. The tools will support student engagement, ownership and mastery as well as real life learning experiences through project based learning. It also provides a way for learning to happen anytime and anyplace, not just within the walls of school.

Another beneficial quality about this model is the parent communication aspect.  As a parent of a high school student it has become increasingly hard to navigate the school experience and support my daughter in her academic life. Additional resources will be shared as a way for parents to stay involved and support their scholar in a meaningful way, including the chance for parents to access to class content and to track their scholar's progress through course content, projects and short and long term goals.

At BVP we truly want scholars to be prepared for college and beyond. We feel strongly about sending them off with not only the content they need, but also with the skills to be a learner in the ever changing world around them. To that end, I am truly excited for what this endeavor will bring to our scholars and families.

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