Monday, June 2, 2008

Small Learning Communities

I went to a meeting down at Tweed today to discuss Small Learning Communities. The city is thinking about expanding Small Learning Community work to a handful of middle schools next year, and and exploratory panel wanted to hear from several principals who are at different stages of this work.

Two years ago, our school divided into teams for the first time. This year, we began to deepen the work of the teams. We saw the beginnings of inter-disciplinary planning and saw our math and ELA content teams form common assessments, rubrics and criteria.

Many schools have "teams" in name only. At 339, our teams function at a high level, yet we still are eager to continue to delve into academic rigor, differentiation and student engagement. I hope that the city decides to invest in a cadre of middle schools that can examine the work of small learning communities. SLC's can transform middle school practice, and we would love to participate.

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