Submitted by monica.sandoval on Tue, 10/24/2017 - 15:09
Describe campus/program, goals, and theory of change

Harmony Science Academy is a comprehensive four-year college preparatory public charter high school serving grades 9-12. Its mission is to prepare each student  for higher education by providing a safe, caring, and collaborative atmosphere featuring a quality, student-centered educational program with a strong emphasis on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.  

The school was opened in the fall of 2000 and graduated its first senior class in the spring of 2005. Harmony Science Academy is a designated T-STEM academy and is accredited by Texas Education Agency. Students are enrolled through a lottery process and applications are open to the public. Harmony Public Schools educates nearly 36,000 students in grades K through 12 on 54 campuses in Texas. The school operates on a two-semester system with nine week quarters. 

As a STEM academy our ultimate goal is to prepare our students to the STEM related fields, higher education and work life. In order to improve our services every year the campus improvement plan is determined utilizing data gathered from the previous school year. Also, we are doing SWOT analysis  as well. All decisions that are made on the campus are data-driven.   Programs are evaluated based on the data retrieved throughout the year.  Student progress is continually monitored through data analysis; and all programs go through the Demming Cycle: Plan, Do, Check, Adjust.

Describe Blueprint Benchmark strengths

This Academy has many strengths because of their high expectations and achievement over time with a diverse population. The highlights are as follows:

The College and Career Focus is of utmost importance here. The counselors begin with entering with graders in the spring of 8th grade developing their Individual Graduation Plan with their parents for the plan to graduation.  They continue through the use of Naviance that helps them track their path to college and complete their applications.

Summer Program Opportunities are plentiful This campus has targeted the summer to expose their students to STEM and higher education  by encouraging their participation in a wide range of opportunities across the country. Over 200 students attend these summer programs.

Community Service is valued by having students use the app in Naviance to sign up for volunteer opportunities throughout the community.

Extracurricular clubs are participation are strong her. They regularly compete in First Robotics Competitions and the Solar Car Challenge just to name a few.

Pathway Opportunities-- The wide range of opportunities offered is vast. they offer both dual credit and AP classes and multiple pathways. They offer 

AP PLTW Engineering

Intro to Engineering

AP Physics 1

AP Physics 2

Computer Science and Software Engineering

AP PLTW Computer Science

Introduction to Computer Science

AP Computer Science Principles

Cybersecurity

AP Computer Science

PLTW Biomedical

  • Principles of the Biomedical Sciences

  • Human Body Systems

  • Medical Interventions

  • Biomedical Innovation

Describe certifications
none
Describe degrees
They offer both the foundation and the distinguished high school graduation program
They do not offer on AA opportunity
What areas of interest do you have for Technical Assistance (up to 3 areas, rank in order of importance)?

Assistance with challenges with Houston Community College in providing the dual credit program.

Help with revisiting pathways to look at offering a certification program with HCCS.

Assistance getting the Advisory Board restructured and more active.

Help with resource allocation or grant assistance to help reduce class size for those most in need.

What tools or resources would be valuable to your campus to support your implementation of the blueprint?

Meetings and liaison with HCCS to help bridge the partnership. It is now complicated by geography since this campus is located in the attendance area of two different colleges at HCCS.

 

Focus time to help the outreach coordinator target business and community partners and establish the Advisory Program.

Possible field visits to HCCS to look at possible industry certifications they may pursue.

What have been your challenges and how have you addressed them?

Budget-- lack of resources have caused an increase in the class size in the most critical areas. Upper level classes for example AP class loads are smaller but the students most in need have larger classes. They are looking at creative ways to budget or looking at ways to trim to be able to lower class size.

Pathways and Coursework-- They currently don't offer any industry certifications and are interested in considering other options

 

Dual Credit -- Still have some problems with dual credit liaisons from HCCS and lack of notification of professors and classes approved. They had a Dual Credit summit last spring but we need to revisit to continue to resolve issues.

 

 

School uses Innovative Instructional Strategies (i.e. PBL, CIF, PLTW, Rounds, New Tech) - please evaluate and describe
Strongly Agree
School uses Innovative Instructional Strategies (i.e. PBL, CIF, PLTW, Rounds, New Tech) - describe
They use PLTW and PBL throughout their academy.
School uses technology effectively - please evaluate and describe
Strongly Agree
School uses technology effectively - describe
They use chrome books in all of their classes. They also offer several offerings that use technology platforms as their main delivery systems.
School develops and offers valuable Work-Based Experiences and Internships - please evaluate and describe
Agree
School develops and offers valuable Work-Based Experiences and Internships - describe
They offer many exposure opportunities but could enhance with internships to enhance the work based experiences.
School promotes an effective Advisory Board Make Up and Work - please evaluate and describe
Agree
School promotes an effective Advisory Board Make Up and Work - describe
They have a few members recruited for the Advisory Board. have not meet this fall because of Harvey. Plan to meet in late November . I am assisting them with structure and recruiting.
School offers effective Student Support and Academic Counseling - please evaluate and describe
Strongly Agree
School offers effective Student Support and Academic Counseling - describe
They have excellent counselors who are versed in college advising and preparing kids for college as well as completing their high school program..
School employs effective Teacher and Staff Development Plan - please evaluate and describe
Strongly Agree
School employs effective Teacher and Staff Development Plan - describe
They offer a wide range of opportunities for their teachers to attend PD. They meet regularly by content and by grade level to target the data as it becomes available. They continually share practice and mentor new teachers.
School employs effective Dual Credit/AP/IB Policies and Procedures - please evaluate and describe
Strongly Agree
School employs effective Dual Credit/AP/IB Policies and Procedures - describe
They have a good system in place to ofer a wide range of opportunities in both dual credit and AP.
School effectively implements DC/AP/IB - please evaluate and describe success/challenges with implementation - please evaluate
Strongly Agree
School effectively implements DC/AP/IB - please evaluate and describe success/challenges with implementation - describe
They have always excelled in their AP program
AP PROGRAM Participation Rates for 2017 is 36%

They also offer dual credit starting in the sophomore year.
School offers effective Bridge Program(s) - please evaluate and describe
Agree
School offers effective Bridge Program(s) - describe
They create a bridge starting with the 8th graders in the spring of the 8th grade year . They work with them on their IGP and then conduct a bridge program with them in the summer before school starts.

They also give them an opportunity to take TSI and get a baseline score.
School offers valuable Internship Opportunities - please evaluate and describe
Neutral
School offers valuable Internship Opportunities - describe
Not yet we are planning to develop this opportunity
School offers effective Student Capstone Projects - please evaluate and describe
Strongly Agree
School offers effective Student Capstone Projects - describe
All of the PLTW research nd design courses offer a Capstone opportunity for students.
School offers effective Mentoring Program(s) - please evaluate and describe
Agree
School offers effective Mentoring Program(s) - describe
There are opportunities for students to be mentored by alumni students and upperclassmen. A more formalized program may be considered.
School offers engaging and effective Academic Clubs and Extra-Curricular Activities - please evaluate and describe
Strongly Agree
School offers engaging and effective Academic Clubs and Extra-Curricular Activities - describe
They have a wide range of clubs and competition opportunities. They also offer some sports opportunities to allow students to compete with other campuses. they have been very successful in their robotics competitions.
Describe IHE Partners and level of support including use of facilities

They currently partner with HCCS for dual credit.

 

They also partner with U Of Houston and Rice for various  student exposure opportunities

School provides purposeful and effective Program Pathways (with key courses) - please evaluate and describe
Strongly Agree
School provides purposeful and effective Program Pathways (with key courses) - describe

They offer PLTW BioMedical, Engineering and Computer Science

 

They also offer some other pathways in Business and technology as well as Arts.

Describe established workforce/industry partnerships and level of support

This area is underdevelopment. They have good relationships with many of the IHEs in the area but need more business and community involvement.

Provide a preliminary rating for Blueprint benchmark 'Mission-Driven Leadership' (TSTEM)
8
Provide a preliminary rating for Blueprint benchmark 'STEM Culture' (TSTEM)
9
Provide a preliminary rating for Blueprint benchmark 'Student Support' (TSTEM)
9
Provide a preliminary rating for Blueprint benchmark 'Teacher Development and Support' (TSTEM)
8
Provide a preliminary rating for Blueprint benchmark 'Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment' (T-STEM)
9
Provide a preliminary rating for Blueprint benchmark 'Strategic Alliances' (TSTEM)
7
Provide a preliminary rating for Blueprint benchmark 'Growth and Sustainability' (TSTEM)
8
chart image

Rating

Program 16-17 SAT Average (#)
1068
Program 16-17 ACT Average (#)
24