Dear Parents and Community,
I have started a twitter account and plan on using this tool to update and get information to the community each day. Please follow me at https://twitter.com/DrJimpowell.
Since we are preparing to build a new 3 through 8 facility there has been a great deal for our school personnel to learn, research, understand and plan around. Current research and literature on student achievement and learning shows that our nation’s high school graduates entering college are not prepared to be successful in college math, science and English language arts. It is reported that 30% of students entering college need remediation prior to doing college level work. On the other hand employers nationwide tell us that students entering the work force lack skills to be successful in the modern work environment. Problem solving, collaboration skill, reasoning, analyzing, synthesizing and decision making are often touted as the skills lacking by students as they enter the work force. In order to prepare students to be successful in college or in a career, we must require them to employ subject area knowledge to analyze, synthesize and solve real world problems. This will require students to learn more deeply, more meaningfully and be able to apply the content to these problems. This type of learning will require educators to re-think the instructional practices and strategies they use to engage students in the learning environment. The facility that will allow this variety in instructional practices will need to be highly flexible, inviting, provide for collaborative activities, and designed to accommodate multiple types of learning activities. As an example, providing for a mix of space and furniture options, designed for mobility, allows for traditional layouts while also meeting the need for collaboration and group work. This is certainly a challenge in the design phases of the new facility project.
A growing body of research supports the belief that the quality of where we learn has a significant impact on how we learn. In other words facility design has a significant impact on student learning and achievement. The design also has an impact on other factors as well, such as; motivation, engagement, instructional practices of the teacher, illness and health, attendance rate, behavior, and satisfaction of students and teachers. In order to develop a school design that will support a robust future-driven educational program, the literature recommends keeping the following in mind:
District personnel are working hard to ensure that our new facility will be a world class environment for the students and community of North Ridgeville. Our new facility must support meaningful learning, foster strategic instruction and inspire students and educators to engage in enthusiastic inquiry and examination of content and concepts.