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What are Magnet Schools today? Charla Bowman Stephanie Cain Sarah Dekany Laurie Hill Mallory Jaryga April 4, 2006 Welcome to today’s seminar! Please help yourself to the provided snacks and beverages Please be seated as quickly as possible so that we may begin Goals and Objectives Students will… demonstrate their prior knowledge of magnet schools. understand the origins and development of magnet schools. contribute meaningfully to the seminar. develop an informed opinion about magnet schools. Definition “A public elementary school, public secondary school, public elementary education center, or public secondary education center that offers a special curriculum capable of attracting substantial numbers of students of different racial backgrounds." Purpose "Magnet programs aim to eliminate, reduce, or prevent minority group isolation in elementary and secondary schools while strengthening students' knowledge of academic subjects and their grasp of marketable vocational skills. The special curriculum of a magnet school attracts substantial numbers of students from different social, economic, ethnic, and racial backgrounds and provides greater opportunities for voluntary and court-ordered desegregation efforts to succeed." History of Magnet Schools 1968 – McCarver Elementary in Tacoma, Washington 1971 – Supreme Court ruled in favor of a forced integration program 1972 (-1981) – Emergency School Assistance Act by 1975 – the term “magnet school” was widely accepted 1985 –Magnet School Assistance Program (MSAP) in the Education for Economic Security Act – focus was aiding desegregation while improving quality of education – still exists today – maintains the same goals of integration and choice Enrollment No state specifications – Varies among districts and schools Dallas ISD – Student must complete an application – Student may have to complete other requirements based on specific schools – 30% of the seats are awarded district-wide by rank-ordering applicants – 70% of the seats are awarded within area superintendents‟ geographic areas (adjusted proportionally for student population) by rank-ordering applicants – Some schools use a lottery system Who attends magnet schools? The typical student is… – less likely to be eligible for free or reduced-price lunch programs. – more likely to live in 2-parent households. – more likely to have parents who are employed and have college degrees. Curriculum Magnet school curricula must cover state academic standards Specialized curricula are infused into regular class instruction, offered as elective classes, or both Students take the TAKS test Teacher Certification Basic Requirements – Bachelor‟s degree from an accredited college or university – Completed teacher education through an approved program – Completed appropriate teacher certification tests for desired subject and grade level To teach at a magnet school – School provided formal/informal training – Professionals teach occasionally Magnet Schools Assistance Program Purpose – Assist in the desegregation of schools by giving financial assistance to eligible educational agencies Funding – Receive funds like non-magnet public schools – "Only local agencies that are implementing court-ordered or federally approved voluntary desegregation plans that include magnet schools are eligible to apply. Private schools do not participate in this program." Magnet Schools Assistance Program Application – Submit description of how grant will be used to facilitate desegregation – How magnet program will increase student academic achievement – Criteria used to select students for program Priority – Demonstrating greatest need for assistance – Propose to carry out new magnet school programs – Propose to select students by methods such as lottery, rather than through academic examination Brief Discussion What are the pros and cons of magnet schools as an option of school choice? Booker T. Washington Purposes/Goals – To attract artistically gifted students from the Dallas community at large – To accept an ethnically balanced student body – To prepare students for college/ university/ professional schools or for professional career entry Booker T. Washington Purposes/Goals, cont. – To educate the whole child by fostering the development of perception, conceptualization, sensitivity, and creativity – To develop the students' abilities so that they can express their ideas clearly and specifically within their chosen art form Booker T. Washington History – Built in 1922 in the Dallas Arts District – First African American high school in Dallas Curriculum – Performing and Visual Arts Academic Success Enrollment/Admission – Audition Teacher Certification – Over 83% have advanced degrees – Some professionals W.H. Atwell Law Academy Mission Statement – “The mission of W.H. Atwell is to ensure that all students demonstrate the academic, social, and emotional skills needed to be successful in tomorrow's world. This is accomplished in an environment that responds to the unique needs of each student through excellence in instruction and a partnership of students, staff, parents and community.” W.H. Atwell Law Academy Definition and Origin of law magnets – Student profile – School profile – Funding Community school and academy – School within a school Enrollment – 100 available seats W.H. Atwell Law Academy Curriculum – Regular classes integrate ideas and concepts of law – Law electives Academic Success Extracurricular Activities – Sports – Fine Arts – UIL Competitions Attractions Brief Discussion How does public opinion affect the decision to attend a magnet school? Richardson High School Mission Statement “Richardson high school will continue its rich, proud tradition by providing a flexible and extensive curriculum, high expectations, and partnership with the community to ensure that all members of our diverse population become productive life-long learners and contributing members of the global community.” Richardson Arts, Law, and Science Magnet High School Mission Statement “The purpose of the Richardson Arts, Law and Science Magnet High School is to accelerate the pursuit of professional goals and skills.” Richardson Arts, Law, and Science Magnet High School Curriculum – Seven “career strands” – Core classes – Classroom differences – Magnet Guidance Program Enrollment – Interview, Audition, Writing samples – 600 students in magnet programs – 16% African American, 10% Asian/Pacific Islander, 8% Hispanic, 66% Other Richardson Arts, Law, and Science Magnet High School Teachers – 15 teachers – No additional training and/or education Extracurricular Activities – Athletics – Cheerleading – Drill Team – Music Academic Success The Academy of Irving Mission Statement “The Academy of Irving ISD is a collaborative learning community that enhances the district's high school education program. It is our mission to provide a unique set of relevant learning experiences to our student-customers that produces graduates who are life-long learners, effective citizens, and productive members of society. We will be a nationally recognized model of effective integration of business, community and education resources to provide students with integrated academic and career preparation.” The Academy of Irving History/Founding – Began in 2001-2002 – Became a stand-alone campus in 2004 Curriculum – Advanced & applied technology – Education & early childhood – Legal studies – Entrepreneurship & tourism studies – Medical and dental studies – Visual Arts & Communications Academic Success The Academy of Irving Enrollment – Lottery system for students in the Irving school district – 55% Hispanic, 7% Asian, 28% White, 10% African American – “Our demographics exactly mirror the rest of the district.” – Mr. Eric Creeger, VP Extra-Curricular Activities – A few academic clubs such as the chess club – No sports Quotes from Mr. Eric Creeger Vice Principal, The Academy of Irving “The entire point of this building is to make education relevant … [to] keep the kids engaged in their career path long enough that they see why their education is important to them.” Because of pure lottery and uncompetitive admissions, “It’s not an elite school. It‟s not „white flight‟ or anything like that.” “The biggest problem with education in general … is the emphasis on high-stakes testing … we have an alternate mission; we actually have a vision for this campus. It‟s not just to put up with the kids for four years and get rid of them. We‟re working toward a specific goal.” Brief Discussion Would a school with multiple magnet programs attract more students than a school with only one program? Small Group Discussion Does your school fit the government definition of a magnet school? - How is it the same? - How is it different? Post-Assessment Please take a few moments to complete the post-assessment included in your packet. Thank you for your participation in today‟s seminar!
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