Submitted by mary helen.garza on Sun, 11/05/2017 - 15:35
Describe campus/program, goals, and theory of change

Campus:

     The academy believes that all children can go to college---a journey to and through college beginning with a solid foundation in academics and culture.  Students are given individualized attention so that they meet their long term goals.  High school students are given the opportunity to earn college credits and to get accepted to colleges and universities of their choice.

Goals 2017-2018:

     5.2.G  Develops 6-12 student portfolios of interest in STEM Capstone Projects and STEM Internship Opportunities.

     1.2.A  Establishes a Design Team and defines the role the team plays.

     1.2.C  Develops and demonstrates support from a STEM Advisory Board

Theory of Change:

     The academy utilizes new initiatives, such as STEM for the first year this year, to supplement a well-established rigorous curriculum in place.

 

Describe Blueprint Benchmark strengths

The academy is TEA STEM Designated for the first time in 2017-2018 and has not established any Blueprint benchmark strengths.

Describe certifications
N/A
Describe degrees
N/A
What areas of interest do you have for Technical Assistance (up to 3 areas, rank in order of importance)?

The academy administration expressed the following two areas targeted for technical assistance:

     1.  Developing their Capstone Project program for this year.

     2.  Professional development for administrators in the area of mentoring Seniors.

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

The administration expressed that the following had been challenges since school started:

     1.  Assembling a STEM Advisory Board

     2.  Convening a well-represented Design/Leadership Team who reflects buy-in and ownership in the STEM initiative

     3.  Expanding their PBL teaching and learning strategies 

     4.  Assigning English AP teachers the delivery of Capstone Projects

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
The faculty uses the following innovative instructional strategies:
1. Instructional rounds, two times per week
2. Project based learning---Social Studies teachers use PBL weekly/monthly
3. Project Lead the Way---Engineering Design and Principles of Engineering
4. IDEA Public Schools has designed their own curriculum instructional frameworks.
School uses technology effectively - please evaluate and describe
Strongly Agree
School uses technology effectively - describe
Technology is used effectively by:
1. Teachers---They are assigned their own laptop, issued a district cell phone, have digital projectors in their classrooms, each have a doc camera, and in content subjects such as Math, the teachers utilize TI N-Spires and clickers.
2. Students---The academy has twelve Computers on Wheels (COWs) with thirty laptops each for student use. There is one COW specific to the Engineering classes. There is also one COW with thirty-three laptops in the library for student use. Those laptops can be checked out over night. Students are able to use thirty desk tops in the Computer Lab. All Special Education (SPED) students and English Language Learners (ELLs) may check out iPads as needed.
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
All IDEA students are required to complete one hundred and twenty-five community service hours cumulative in grades ninth through twelfth and by the time they graduate. Students volunteer in businesses that are high interest to them for future careers. The academy recognizes that they need to bring more structure to this program to qualify those volunteer hours as work-based experiences and internships.
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
Currently, the academy has acquired three business/community partners to serve on their STEM Advisory Board---one Math Professor from the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV), one Engineer from a local Engineering firm, and one medical X-Ray technician. To increase the number of members on the Board, the administration will ask each Design/Leadership Team member to invite one STEM-related career professional/community member to serve on the Board.
School offers effective Student Support and Academic Counseling - please evaluate and describe
Strongly Agree
School offers effective Student Support and Academic Counseling - describe
The academy provides effective support and counseling:
1. The Accelerated Reader (AR) Program, a reading intervention/computerized supplementary reading program, provides independent reading practice as a way of managing student performance by providing students and teachers feedback from quizzes based on books the students read.
2. The academy provides accelerated AP Geometry Camp during the summer.
3. An daily intervention period for the four core classes is reflected in the Master Schedule for at risk of failing students.
4. The academy offers after school tutorials.
5. Teachers utilize "Think through Math" for both acceleration and intervention.
6. Counselors meet one-on-one with students and parents to discuss grades.
School employs effective Teacher and Staff Development Plan - please evaluate and describe
Strongly Agree
School employs effective Teacher and Staff Development Plan - describe
The IDEA district headquarters Specialists offer a strong and well-structured professional development (PD) model for all of its teachers. The district has a partnership/contract with Region One for training. The district hosts weekly/monthly meetings such as Coaching Cycles, Get Better Faster Through Uncommon Schools, and Data Conversations to ensure classroom instruction is based data.
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
The academy has policies and procedures for the following:
1. Has a dual enrollment policy for five online courses
2. Has "AP for All" program, a very strong AP curriculum program for its students.
3. Has no IB policies/procedures in place.
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
The academy implements AP and DC::
1. Has a dual enrollment policy for five online courses
2. Has "AP for All" program, a very strong AP curriculum program for its students.
3. Has no IB policies/procedures in place.

School offers effective Bridge Program(s) - please evaluate and describe
Agree
School offers effective Bridge Program(s) - describe
The academy provides summer 'Culture Camps"---orientation programs for new students passing from fifth to sixth grades. It also offers a "Fish Camp" for students passing from eighth to ninth grades. Administration/teacher/counselor presentations are made to parents and students on school expectations, uniforms, norms, and future field trips/lessons. Tours are given to those attending.
School offers valuable Internship Opportunities - please evaluate and describe
Agree
School offers valuable Internship Opportunities - describe
All IDEA students are required to complete one hundred and twenty-five community service hours cumulative in grades ninth through twelfth and by the time they graduate. Students volunteer in businesses that are high interest to them for future careers. The academy recognizes that they need to bring more structure to this program to qualify those volunteer hours as work-based experiences and internships.
School offers effective Student Capstone Projects - please evaluate and describe
Agree
School offers effective Student Capstone Projects - describe
This year, the English AP teachers will coordinate and consolidate the STEM Senior Capstone Projects with the English class projects that are required for all graduating Seniors.
School offers effective Mentoring Program(s) - please evaluate and describe
Strongly Agree
School offers effective Mentoring Program(s) - describe
Currently, high school Seniors mentor elementary school students after school. Basketball players also mentor elementary school students from four to five p.m. They help them with their reading and math homework. National Honor Society (NHS) students help with tutorials and mentor one NHS inductee as they are accepted into the organization. All administration and faculty mentor five Seniors each.
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
The academy offers the following Clubs and extra-curricular activities:
Readers Club Yearbook Dance Club
Orchestra Journalism Club Athletics:
National Honor Society UIL Poetry Interpretation Flag Football
National Junior Honor Society Music Club Volleyball, State Power Lifting
Robotics Club Math Club Cross Country Track
Describe IHE Partners and level of support including use of facilities

IDEA Public Schools headquarters acquires a blanket, district Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) for all of its valley academies. 

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

The academy offers the following effective program pathways:

     1.  Project Lead the Way---Introduction to Engineering Design, Principles of Engineering

     2.  Arts & Humanities---AP Capstone (designated by the College Board)

     3.  STEM---Computer Science, Technology, AP Calculus, AP Chemistry, AP Biology, AP Environmental Science

Describe established workforce/industry partnerships and level of support

The academy does not have established Memorandums of Understanding with workforce/industry partners.  They are developing this.

Provide a preliminary rating for Blueprint benchmark 'Mission-Driven Leadership' (TSTEM)
3
Provide a preliminary rating for Blueprint benchmark 'STEM Culture' (TSTEM)
4
Provide a preliminary rating for Blueprint benchmark 'Student Support' (TSTEM)
4
Provide a preliminary rating for Blueprint benchmark 'Teacher Development and Support' (TSTEM)
5
Provide a preliminary rating for Blueprint benchmark 'Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment' (T-STEM)
5
Provide a preliminary rating for Blueprint benchmark 'Strategic Alliances' (TSTEM)
2
Provide a preliminary rating for Blueprint benchmark 'Growth and Sustainability' (TSTEM)
2
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Rating

Program 16-17 ACT Average (#)
20
Program 16-17 DC Course Credit Awarded (# hours)
0