Westport high s approach to at risk students
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Project Action. Westport High’s Approach to “At-Risk” Students. Mary Jo Medeiros. School Adjustment Counselor Project Action Grant Coordinator. Opening. Workshop Overview: Introductions Group Discussion: Define At-risk Barriers to Effective Intervention Panel Presentation

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Westport high s approach to at risk students

Project Action

Westport High’s Approach

to “At-Risk” Students


School adjustment counselor project action grant coordinator

Mary Jo Medeiros

School Adjustment Counselor

Project Action Grant Coordinator


Westport high s approach to at risk students

Opening

Workshop Overview:

  • Introductions

  • Group Discussion:

    • Define At-risk

    • Barriers to Effective Intervention

  • Panel Presentation

    • School-wide Initiatives

    • Alternative Ed Grant Funded Programs

      • ACT Classroom Model (FY ‘05 – FY ‘07)

      • Project Action (FY ‘08 –FY ‘09)

  • Program Highlights

    • Collaborating with community-based organizations and agencies

    • Engaging parents and family

    • High-quality curriculum and instruction techniques for at-risk students

    • Incorporating wrap-around services and referral out services

  • Questions


Panel participants

Introductions

Panel & Participants


Westport high s approach to at risk students

How Do You Define “At-Risk” Students?

Open Responses


Westport high s approach to at risk students

Obstacles and Barriers to Meeting Students’ Needs

Open Responses


Westport high s approach to at risk students

WHS Definition of “At-Risk Student

  • Academic

    • Middle School identification

    • Credit Deficiencies

      • Repeat freshmen

    • Citizenship

      • School-wide rubric

      • Grading on report cards

      • Ineligibility for sports

  • Poor Attendance

  • Detentions and Suspensions

    • In school and out of school

  • Social and Emotional Issues


Westport high s approach to at risk students

What students report get in the way of school concentration…

WHS students :

Have lost 7 peers within the past three years

6 students lost a parent in the past school calendar year

Report households where domestic violence is present, parental mental health issues and addiction render the caregiver unavailable

Westport is home to at least 4 adolescent foster homes and some kinship placements.


Mrs bridget buckless librarian grant coordinator parent

WHS Overview & Secondary Reading Grant

Mrs. Bridget Buckless,

Librarian

Grant Coordinator

Parent


Westport high s approach to at risk students

WHS Population

  • Small town

    • Few minorities

    • Little community resources

    • Few adolescent social opportunities

    • Small student body

      • Approximately 500 students

  • Border cities

    • More diverse resources

    • School choice students


Westport high s approach to at risk students

Mission Statement

Westport High School’s mission is to challenge students to

gain knowledge,

acquire skills’

develop talents,

and contribute to a climate of respect.


Westport high s approach to at risk students

WHS School-Wide Initiatives

Reading Comprehension in Content Areas

Workshop Model

Co-Teaching

PASS class

RESPECT referral process

Student Success Plan


Westport high s approach to at risk students

Reading Comprehension in the Content Areas

  • “Modeling” is both necessary and difficult to do properly.

  • Modeling allows the students to see what good practices look like

  • Strategies need to be taught in a direct, explicit manner.

  • Students need to practice strategies until they own them.


Westport high s approach to at risk students

Develop a Plan to Model Reading in Your Content Area

  • Set the purpose for reading this material

  • How would students need to read this material?

  • Demonstrate what a good reader would do before, during, and after reading this material

  • What other activities would deepen their understanding of the reading selection?

    • Students learn new vocabulary

    • Students making connections to other subjects or life experiences

  • Students write responses to open-ended questions based on reading selection

  • Use school-wide reading rubric to assess


  • Westport high s approach to at risk students

    I DO

    WE DO

    YOU DO


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Literacy Study Group RECOMMENDATIONS

    • Problem with students’ learned helplessness

    • Look at school-wide culture

    • Discussion of literacy issues led to a need for consistency in classroom routines.

    • What school-wide routines would best suit our school?


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    School-Wide Approaches

    • Structures are necessary for students

    • Need for consistency among the faculty

    • Predictable routines in every classroom

      • Posting an agenda

      • Establishing an opening routine

      • Establishing a closing routine


    Mr tom clark english teacher

    Workshop Model in an English Classroom

    Mr. Tom Clark

    English Teacher


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Workshop Model

    • Daily routine is as follows:

      • Independent reading (15-20 minutes)

      • Read aloud - Think aloud/Talk aloud (15-20 minutes)

      • Mini Lesson (5-10 minutes)

      • Work Period (30-40 minutes)

      • Closing (5-10 minutes)

    • Routine is essential!


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Photograph of a teacher and students in a classroom

    - Removed for posting to ESE website.


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Teacher Modeling

    Allows the students to see what good practices look like

    Most of the modeling takes place during the read aloud

    The focus of each read aloud will be one of the “7 Habits of Proficient Readers”


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Classroom Set-Up

    • Small groups are conducive to this type of class

      • Conferencing can occur easily

      • Group work

      • Peer editing

      • Group discussions

    • Random seating techniques


    Matt girard mathematics teacher

    Co-Teaching

    Matt Girard

    Mathematics Teacher


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Co-Teaching

    • Access the experiences, knowledge, and creativity of two teachers

    • Exposes the students to various teaching styles

    • Multiple intelligences can be addressed more easily

    • Allows small group work and individual attention


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Keys to Success:

    Co-planning time

    Chemistry

    Shared Responsibility (equals)

    Consistency


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Benefits of Co-teaching for Students:

    Experience different teaching styles

    More individual attention

    Accommodations are fulfilled

    Small group feel in a regular classroom


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Benefits of Co-teaching for Teachers:

    Attendance/Tardies

    Homework Check

    Missing work / Make-up work

    Discipline (consistency)

    Shared ancillary tasks

    Share “amusing” moments


    Pass teacher special education teacher

    Paul Bornstein

    PASS Teacher

    Special Education Teacher


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    PASS (Positive Attitude for Student Success)

    The PASS Program is intended to foster compliance with school regulations through the usage of a point and level system that places the onus of responsibility on the students.

    See handouts


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Movie of a teacher

    Removed for posting to ESE website


    Leslie ruel guidance counselor act teacher

    Addressing Students Needs

    Leslie Ruel

    Guidance Counselor

    ACT Teacher


    Regular education student performance evaluation consultation for teachers

    R.E.S.P.E.C.T.

    Regular Education Student Performance Evaluation Consultation for Teachers


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Goals to Benefit Staff

    Maintain an environment that supports and encourages quality teaching.

    Provide staff with opportunities to participate in school improvement and the decision making process

    Encourage creativity and innovation

    Provide ongoing staff development programs and opportunities.

    Create applied learning situations that require students to demonstrate proficiencies.

    Measure progress in a variety of ways

    Hold ourselves responsible and accountable for appropriate use of resources and delivery of quality education.


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Goals to Benefit Students

    • Maintain a healthy and safe learning environment.

    • Provide an educational program that develops effective communication skills, a foundation for career skills, and a strong sense of citizenship.

    • Appreciate and accommodate differences in the way students learn.

    • Provide students with the appropriate time and assistance to achieve academic success.

    • Hold high expectations that demand intellectual rigor

    • Integrate learning opportunities that support the development of critical thinking skills.


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Five Steps of R.E.S.P.E.C.T

    Step One:Teacher Requests Consultation

    Step Two:Convener Acts upon request

    (principal)

    Step Three:Meeting is Conducted

    Step Four:Teacher/Staff Implementation

    Strategies & Monitor Student

    Progress

    Step Five:Follow-up Consultation is

    Conducted


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Student Success and Curriculum Accommodation Plan

    Tool for teachers and students to identify specific needs.

    Recognizes student’s academic history (for instance IEP or 504 support, grades, standardized test scores).

    Allows recommended actions to be established to ensure student success through accommodations or curriculum modifications (extended time, preferential seating)

    Short term and long term goals are established for each student along with strategies to attain the goals.

    A plan is developed to measure student success (meeting, review grades etc.)


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Alternative Ed Grant

    • Reduce drop out rate

    • Outreach to provide services to students

    • Academic Support

      • Reduce retention rate

        • Provide support for student to pass classes and earn credits

    • Plan for transition to work or higher education


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Alternative Ed Grant Goals

    Goal 1: High-risk students at Westport High School will be educated to the same standards as all students, will meet the competency determination for a diploma, and will graduate.

    Goal 2: Students will develop coping and self-management skills to deal with social, emotional and behavioral issues, and will develop life skills that will enable them to transition successfully into post high school life.


    Act classroom project action therapist

    ACT Classroom & Project Action Therapist

    Cynthia Poyant, MSW, LCSW


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    ACT (Alternative Classroom and Transitions Program)

    Alternative classroom comprised of 20 at-risk students.

    One full-time teacher and one social worker/therapist

    One full-time aid for the first year of the program.

    R.E.S.P.E.C.T. process initiated enrollment in the program.


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    ACT Curriculum

    • Life Skills: All students were enrolled in one of two Life Skills classes.

    • Students learned:

      • Career planning (job search, college application process, resume writing, interviewing skills)

      • Communication skills both oral and written.

      • Anger management skills

      • Social skills

      • Study Skills

      • Stress management skills


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    ACT Curriculum

    • Some students remained in the ACT classroom for an academic course.

    • US History or

    • English

    • The school wide curriculum and rubrics were followed.

    • Behavioral Point system monitored and maintained student’s success in the program.

    • Students were enrolled in other courses outside of the ACT program which allowed for their transition out of the program and a link to regular education teachers.


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Promote Student Control in the Classroom By:

    Modeling: Model the behavior you want to see from your students.

    Corrective Prompts: “the look”, finger over the mouth, slight tap on the desk.

    Corrective Strategies: Give the student time to reflect on their situation

    -Cool Down Time

    -Coupling Statements: Statements which you describe a student’s inappropriate behavior while offering a more appropriate behavior.

    -Reality statements and Reasons: Point out potential benefits or negative

    outcomes of certain behaviors. It provides students with the “why” of

    certain behaviors.

    -Empathy: Convince students not to give up on learning a certain skill.

    Let the student know that you understand their situation.

    Specific Praise: Recognize any appropriate responses or actions the student takes which will reinforce self-control and maintain appropriate behaviors.

    Guided Self Correction: A problem-solving strategy, that can be used with a student when he is agreeable and willing to have a conversation with you.


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    ACT’s Programs

    Parent group was created and organized by the ACT teacher/counselor and social worker/therapist.

    ACT Council was developed and was comprised of: administrators, special educaiton teachers, regular education teachers, parents, students and guidance, along with middle school assistant principal and local social service agency representative.

    Community Connections:

    -Bristol Community College: Career development

    -University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth: Career development

    -SSTAR: local social service agency to assist with social/emotional issues

    -Field Trip to Boston for cultural and social skill development

    -Memorial Garden: Created and developed by the ACT students in response to the loss of several peers at Westport High School. The Garden allowed ACT students to communicate with their community for donations, assistance and with peers to share in their grief.

    -Memorial Garden Service: Annually ACT students and now PROJECT ACTION students organize a service on Memorial Day weekend to commemorate the garden and all lives lost.


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Parent Communication Strategies

    • Communicate positive news frequently.

    • Develop incentives with administration and peers to get families to come regularly to your school.

    • When families do visit, make them feel comfortable.

    • Encourage technology (Web pages, phone calls, brief e-mails)

    • Use school to home notes when daily communication is necessary.

    • Recruit parent volunteers.

    • Include parents in decisions that affect the student’s school life. (PTA/PTO, Parent representatives)


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    ACT’s Successes

    Five students graduated from Westport High School as part of the ACT program.

    All students enrolled in the ACT program passed their MCAS tests

    The Memorial Garden-A perpetual gift to the school and community

    Project Action-ACT was the catalyst to the new program being offered to Westport High School Students.


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    MEMORY GARDEN


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Photograph of students

    Removed for posting to ESE website.


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Project Action

    • Moved from classroom model to a student center model.

    • All students in with general education population

    • Increased number of student participation (30)

    • Open enrollment throughout the year

    • Can enroll for a single service, or multiple services

    • Services are voluntary and flexible

    • Offers a variety of services providing “voice and choice”

    • Enrollment is team process with family and guidance


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Program Development

    Maintain R.E.S.P.E.C.T. as gateway

    Establish provider contracts

    Establish MOU’s with partners

    Create the environment


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Creating the Environment

    Creating the space for community activities and Group Treatment

    Maintain technology in the room

    Student resource library available

    Multiple uses: book club, council meeting, sped social skills group, small group testing, open houses

    Creating an Individual Therapy space

    Separate entrance for confidentiality

    Noise machine

    Multiple uses: Family treatment, family meetings, teacher meetings, private testing, space for other community based providers


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Establish Rules and Develop Tools

    • Enrollment form

      • Releases of information

        • Empowers student

      • Pre-program assessment of needs and types of services for planning

      • Highlights confidentiality

      • Age of majority for 18 yr. olds

    • Menu of services

      • Interest in program services

      • Link to school clubs and activities

      • Serving on the council

      • Memory Garden

    • Service memo to teachers


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    WHS Community Partners

    STARR- provide drug awareness groups to student in need of support around their own use or the use and abuse of a family member.

    Cynthia Poyant has been a Council Member and has provided individual and family counseling to the students in the former ACT classroom and during this past year in Project Action.

    Community Counseling of Bristol County will remain active members of the council and will continue to provide individual therapy and psycho-therapy groups within the school setting

    St. Anne’s Hospital has offered DRIVE seminars to all WHS students, participated in the Health Fair and provided their Trauma Crisis Team services to the school.

    Bristol Community College (BCC) has hosted Project Action students for career exploration/career day, a tour of their campus and meetings with the Admissions and the Financial Aid Departments.

    UMASS Dartmouth would like to expose the students at WHS to their Alternative Admissions program and have early identification of students who may benefit from their program.


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Project Action Services and Support

    Academic and clinical supports


    Pass teacher study skills teacher

    PASS Teacher

    Study Skills Teacher

    Paul Bornstein


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Photograph of a teacher in a classroom.

    Removed for posting to ESE website.


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Study Skills Syllabus

    Week Five:

    Strategies for taking notes

    Dating entries

    Highlighting/underlining key terms

    Abbreviating/shorthand

    Week Six:

    Vocabulary

    Break down words on basis of prefixes, suffixes and Latin roots

    Word association for memory

    Week Seven:

    Memorization skills

    Using flash cards-break down information into smaller parts

    Repetition, repetition, repetition

    Word association review

    Compile list of basic words for memory to be assessed next week

    Week Eight:

    Memory assessment

    Conduct post-course survey

    Week One:

    Conduct pre-course survey

    Being prepared: required materials for classes

    Review lay-out of text book components (Table of contents, glossary, index)

    Week Two:

    Organizational skills

    Three-ring binders

    Tab dividers

    Specifying content divisions (notes, handouts, homework, quizzes/tests)

    Notebooks

    Separation of courses

    Separation information by dating entries

    Separation information by chapter sections

    Split entries

    Week Three:

    Outlining skills

    Review lay-out of chapters in text book (Headings, subheadings, significance of bold or italicized words)

    Complete pre-set outline

    Week Four:

    Pre-reading strategies

    Review week two and determine main topics

    Chapter review questions

    Refer to outline and determine where the answer is likely to be found without actually answering question


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Academic Offerings Matt & Tom

    • Various strategies

      • Real life applications

      • Community connections

      • Structured workshop model

      • Long term project incorporating skills

        • Stock market game

      • Grading

        • Various assessments

    • Environment

      • Classroom setting vs. clinical setting

      • Respecting boundaries

      • Expected behavior

    • Split block

    • Student selection

      • Grouping by grade level

    • Tailored to student needs

      • Student input of needs

      • Student data


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Clinical Services Cynthia

    • Groups

      • Life Skills

      • Anger Management

      • Drug awareness

      • New teen empowerment

    • Individual and family

    • Home visit/outreach as needed

    • Crisis intervention with family

    • Available to staff and administration

      • Introduced at staff meetings

      • Visible and accessible to students and family

    • Parent support (groups, family nights)

    • Sit in council meetings


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Faculty Support

    1:1 consultation available

    Faculty updates at staff meetings

    Opportunity to serve on council

    Opportunities to send staff and providers out for training

    Vicarious trauma and self-care workshop brought to teachers

    Staff to staff training at faculty meeting


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Project Action Council

    • Council Topics:

    • Review enrollment

    • Review service offerings to students, parents, & faculty

    • Assess gaps

    • Plan for sustainability

    • Membership includes:

    • Coordinator

    • District Director of Curriculum

    • Principal

    • Special Education Teacher

    • Students (3)

    • Parent/Guardian (2)

    • Providers

    • Open invitation to Middle School Assistant Principal and all community partners


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Photograph of a teacher in a classroom.

    Removed for posting to ESE website.


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    • Agenda for Project Action Meeting

    • Tuesday May 20th, 2008

    • 1. Welcome

    • 2. Enrollment in Fourth Quarter Services

    • 3. The 84 Visibility Mini Grant- collaboration with SSTAR and WHS SADD Chapter.

    • Kick Butts Day visibility event – April 2, 2008

      • Health Fair visibility event—April 11th, 2008

      • Matt Reed Walk for MD

  • 4. BCC Career Services- Career Dimensions-May 16th, 2008

  • Interactive career exploration and education planning system for BCC students and Alumni.

  • 5. Staff Training:

    • “Motivating Hard to Reach, Uninterested and Disruptive Students”

    • “Legal Issued in Discipline”-April 16th, 2008

    • “Performance- Based Graduation”- April 15th, 2008

    • “Strategies for Creating Trauma Sensitive Schools”-May 6th, 2008

  • 6. Memory Garden- Memorial Day Recognition-Friday May 23rd

  • 7. Reschedule Mike Aguiar-SSTAR Summer Support

  • 8. Supplemental Grant Application-Public Relations Brochure and PowerPoint

  • 9. Survey (students, parent/guardian, faculty, provider)


  • Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Data Gathering and Analysis

    • Year end review

      • Credits

      • Attendance

      • Discipline

        • Detention

        • In-school suspension

        • Out of school suspension

      • Drop out


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Survey Says… Quality Assurance

    • Surveys

      • Parents

      • Students

      • Providers

        “I participate in monthly council meetings every month along with my grandson. This is great for students. They get to meet with staff and share ideas.” (Parent)

        “Life skills program helped him think about things in different ways.” (Parent)


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Photographs/movies of two students – one junior and one senior.

    Removed for posting to ESE website.


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Moving Forward

    Earlier identification of post high school planning

    Career “one stop” centers

    Interest in the armed forces

    Eligibility for college support

    Eligibility for dual enrollment

    Emphasize extracurricular activities and sports

    Moved to family night model of support


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Sustainability

    Seek additional grant opportunities

    3rd party billing for clinicians

    Provider services offered by different funding streams


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Empowering Values/Principles

    TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF.

    TAKE CARE OF EACH OTHER.

    TAKE CARE OF THIS PLACE.


    Westport high s approach to at risk students

    Questions??


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