Written by Press Staff Writer
February 19, 2009
Lake High School went through a Technical Assistance Visit (TAV), Jan. 20-22. The visit is a requirement for schools adopting the High Schools That Work (HSTW) school improvement model. The process will take place every three years.
The TAV focuses on progress the school is making to improve the academic achievement and culture of the school. The TAV Team consisted of other high school educators, administrators and a parent. The visit included interviews with parents, students and faculty members. Classroom observations were also completed to compile data for the report.
The team noted the following “Best Practices” –
• High School 101 Course, designed to prepare freshman for what they will experience at Lake High School and to help teach ninth-graders proper study skills and habits.
• Differentiated Instruction: The TAV team was impressed with the number of classrooms where differentiated instruction was taking place, including both Spanish classes, the entire Social Studies department and the Practical Mathematics classes.
• Staff Willingness to Help Students: The students said that the teachers were willing to help them before and after school and during their conference or planning periods.
The TAV team also noted in their report current actions that are taking place in the high school and what the school plans on doing in the future. Current actions include
• Hangar Time, which provides a daily academic assistance period for all its students. It is a requirement for any student with a C- or lower in any class.
• Sustained Silent Reading - a weekly “Drop Everything and Read” (DEAR) time slot where everyone in the building drops whatever he/she is doing and reads self-selected material for 20 minutes.
• Study Island - a computer-based program that has been incorporated into school curriculum to assist students that are having difficulty in passing the Ohio Graduation Test (OGT).
• High School 101 and Buckle Down Books - HS 101 books help students learn proper study habits and skills. Buckle Down books assist freshman and sophomore students pass of the OGT.
• Freshman Orientation helps students transition to the high school from the middle school.
Also listed in the report are High Schools That Work Indicators of Success, including teachers setting high standards; short writing assignments completed monthly; teachers meeting to examine student work; major research papers written; and students being able to earn college credit in high school, among others.