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The Power of ONE James River High School Chesterfield County Public Schools, Virginia. 16 th Annual Model Schools Conference Orlando, Florida Facilitated by: John Titus, Bryan Carr, Mary Ellen Fines, Sharon Hoffert, and Laura Lay.

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The Power of ONE James River High School Chesterfield County Public Schools, Virginia

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the power of one james river high school chesterfield county public schools virginia

The Power of ONEJames River High SchoolChesterfield County Public Schools, Virginia

16th Annual Model Schools Conference

Orlando, Florida

Facilitated by:

John Titus, Bryan Carr, Mary Ellen Fines,

Sharon Hoffert, and Laura Lay

the power of one framing rigor relevance and relationships
The Power of ONEFraming Rigor, Relevance, and Relationships
  • ONE AP Student
  • O.N.E. Lunch
  • Uno, ek, ichi ESL Program
  • WON—Successful Freshmen Transition Program
  • O.N.E. Leadership
James River High SchoolA Chesterfield County Public School3700 James River RoadMidlothian, Virginia 23113


  • Opened in September of 1994 with 1250 students in grade 9 - 11
  • Suburban and composed of individuals and families from diverse ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds


  • A comprehensive high school with a student body of approximately 2000 in grades 9 – 12
  • A staff of 160 teachers and support staff including two librarians, one technology coordinator, eight school counselors and seven administrators
  • A well-developed program of activities and athletics
james river high school
James River High School

Leadership and International Relations

Specialty Center

  • Established in 2002-2003
  • Comprised of about 200 students from a broad range of ability levels and interests
  • Taught the skills and knowledge of becoming effective leaders who learn to develop a balanced international perspective of the world

Media Center

  • Recipient of the 2002 National School Library Program of the Year Award from the American Association of School Librarians
  • Recipient of the national award from Gale Resources for “Excellence in Education”
james river high school5
James River High School


  • Seven Period Alternating Block schedule
  • Works in conjunction with an “Odd/Even” calendar day
  • Odd days: 1, 3, 5, 7
  • Even days: 1, 2, 4, 6
  • First period runs approximately 50 minutes, and blocks two through seven run approximately 85 minutes
  • Opportunity for students to earn seven credits per academic year and broaden their curriculum
james river high school6
James River High School

Advanced Placement Exams: 2006 2007

Exams Administered . . . . . . . . . . 571 1318

Students taking exams . . . . . . . . 352 690

% of Scores 3 or Above . . . . . . . . 72 49

Diplomas AwardedPost Secondary Plans

Advanced Studies 66% 4-Year Colleges/Universities 65%

Standard 30% 2-Year Colleges 19%

Modified Standard 01% Other Continuing Education 4%

Employment/Military 12%

one student growing our ap program
ONE Student:Growing Our AP Program
  • Condensing and “Leveling for Excellence”
  • Collapsing “honors” offerings
  • Offering more advance placement programs
  • Seeking advanced placement potential
rigor seeking ap potential
Rigor: Seeking AP Potential
  • Using PSAT/NMSQT scores to predict success
  • Targeting student not already enrolled in an AP course
  • Using data effectively
  • Recruiting the underserved
apex experiences a dvanced p lacement ex pectations
APEX ExperiencesAdvanced Placement Expectations

Seminars on the benefits and challenges of AP courses:

  • An in-school seminar for students
  • An evening seminar for parents (and students)
successes growing the ap program
Successes: Growing the AP Program

Since 2003

  • 300% increase in minority AP enrollment
  • 400% increase in African-American AP enrollment
  • Over 50 teachers trained in teaching AP courses
  • ONE Lunch—excellent opportunity for AP enrichment and tutoring
challenges growing the ap program
Challenges:Growing the AP Program
  • “Stretch” AP students’ need for additional assistance
  • Rigidity in defining quality and success of AP work
  • Parental concerns about rigor for

“in-between” students

o n e lunch o pportunities n ever e nd
O.N.E. Lunch:Opportunities Never End

Need for Change

  • Growth and need for 5 lunch periods
  • Transportation—student needs for assistance or make-up work
o n e lunch goals rigor relevance and relationships
O.N.E. Lunch Goals: Rigor, Relevance, and Relationships
  • Student Opportunities
    • Academic support
    • Conferences with teachers
    • Completion of work
    • Enrichment opportunities
  • Staff Opportunities
    • Departmental meetings
    • Professional learning communities
process o n e lunch
Process: O.N.E. Lunch
  • Visitation to schools
  • Formation of committee
    • Feasibility?
    • Goals?
    • Logistics?
  • Communication and faculty “buy-in”
  • Creation of O.N.E. lunch culture
logistics o n e lunch
Logistics: O.N.E. Lunch
  • Schedule—1st period, two block classes, lunch, last block
  • Discipline—extra duties
  • Cafeteria—a’ la carte, hot and cold lines
  • Clean up—streamlined with extra trash cans
  • Seating—cafeteria, benches , floor
  • Location—where students can and cannot eat lunch
logistics o n e lunch16
Logistics: O.N.E. Lunch
  • Designated department days—no lunch duty
    • PLC meetings
    • Department meetings
    • Informal department gatherings
  • Adapted schedule—homerooms and assemblies
  • Teacher appointments
enrichment o n e lunch
Enrichment: O.N.E. Lunch
  • Open Mic
  • Lunch in the library
  • Intramurals
  • Ballroom dancing
  • Rapid Fire games
benefits o n e lunch
Benefits: O.N.E. Lunch
  • Less chaos
    • No split classes
    • Fewer tardies after lunch
    • No competitive noise during class
  • Rigor—assistance and enrichment
  • Relevance—student ownership
  • Relationships—time to meet with students informally and time for staff to meet
lessons learned o n e lunch
Lessons Learned: O.N.E. Lunch
  • Some students need encouragement to meet with teachers.
  • Need to create more systematic expectations.
  • Provide early communication about purpose and expectations.
next steps o n e lunch
Next Steps: O.N.E. Lunch
  • Schedule appointments with consequences of lunch detention.
  • Schedule ongoing appointments for those not meeting expectations
  • Use peer tutoring to greater extent.
next steps o n e lunch22
Next Steps: O.N.E. Lunch

Offer intervention suggestions to teachers

  • Early remediation
  • Completion of assignments
  • Revising work
  • Correcting tests
  • Retaking tests
  • Computer tutorials
uno ek ichi english as a second language learners
Uno, ek, ichiEnglish as a Second Language Learners


ESL Center




esl 2003 center
ESL 2003—Center
  • Enrolled in ESL courses.
  • Mainstreamed for mathematics and PE.
  • Assigned ESL students to classes for low-achieving English speakers.
  • Challenged teachers to address needs.
  • Intimidated ESL students.
  • Resulted in a low pass rate among ESL students (30%).
esl 2004 sheltered classes
ESL 2004—Sheltered Classes
  • Provided a sheltered class in mathematics.
  • Differentiated instruction in the “regular” class.
  • Resulted in a high Algebra pass rate among ESL students over the past 3 years (95%).
  • Now offer sheltered classes for World History, Biology, and Earth Science.
esl sheltered classes guidelines
ESL Sheltered Classes: Guidelines
  • Hand select teachers.
  • Foster collaboration among ESL and content teacher.
  • Incorporate ESL objectives into the content.
  • Provide hands-on, relevant instruction.
  • Create a safe environment.
  • Mainstream students as they learn more English and gain confidence.
esl sheltered classes guidelines27
ESL Sheltered Classes: Guidelines
  • Assess ESL students’ ability upon entering school.
  • Avoid placing students in remedial classes based on language skills alone.
  • Provide support to teachers of ESL students in non-sheltered classes.
  • Include all ESL students into the activities of the school.
esl program challenges
ESL Program: Challenges
  • Maintaining the “revolving” door—entrance throughout the year
    • Testing upon arrival
    • Offering foundation classes
  • Educating mainstream content teachers—bias, lack of cultural understanding, rigidity
benefits sheltered instruction
Benefits: Sheltered Instruction

Far beyond the classroom…

Our students’ confidence and

self-esteem has risen and is

apparent in their daily lives.

won a successful freshmen transition program
WON: A Successful Freshmen Transition Program

Need for Change

  • Fearfulness
  • Behavior problems
  • Failure
  • Lacking student “connections”
goals freshmen transition program
Goals: Freshmen Transition Program
  • To help freshmen have a smooth cultural and academic transition (a Winning year).
  • To increase freshmen involvement in school opportunities
  • To decrease the number of discipline referrals.
  • To decrease the number of failures.
process freshmen transition program
Process: Freshmen Transition Program
  • Research—
  • Council and hierarchy
    • 8 Council members
      • Responsible for 3 homerooms each
      • Each homeroom has 15-20 mentors
    • Diversity among mentors
    • Each mentor is responsible for 3-6 freshmen
  • Summer training for mentors
process freshmen transition program33
Process: Freshmen Transition Program

Kick-off orientation day—camp atmosphere

Formal meeting topics

  • Rules and consequences
  • Involvement in school clubs, activities, and sports
  • Study skills
  • Efficiently accessing school resources
  • Academic and personal goals
  • Exam preparation
  • Understanding how to communicate with faculty

Informal connections

  • Freshmen flings – ice-cream, games
  • Remembering birthdays, etc.
  • Offering help with school issues
benefits freshmen transition program
Benefits: Freshmen Transition Program
  • Shared leadership and modeling
  • Student engagement and relevance
  • Gains for mentors and freshmen
  • Relationships
    • Failure is NOT an option for MY freshmen
lessons freshmen transition program
Lessons: Freshmen Transition Program
  • Supportive Data—difficult to obtain
  • Surveys—feedback from freshmen, mentors, and teachers
  • Mentor training—orientation day and connecting with students
  • Strongcouncil—crucial
  • Formal lessons—engaging
  • Communication—the more the better
  • Mentors—ability to connect
o n e leadership o utstanding n etwork e nhancing leadership
O.N.E. Leadership:Outstanding Network Enhancing Leadership

Leadership to Develop Tomorrow’s Leaders

The leadership at James River High School always is considering the input provided by stakeholders.

I.C.L.E. Model Schools Executive Summary. 2007

o n e leadership shared
O.N.E. Leadership—Shared
  • Creating avenues of communication
  • Taking input into action
the power of one framing rigor relevance and relationships40
The Power of ONEFraming Rigor, Relevance, and Relationships
  • Questions?
  • Comments?

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