Academic Innovations

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In-Depth Interviews with Innovative Educators Using Career Choices

We conduct in-depth interviews with educators across the country to learn how they use and adapt the Career Choices curriculum for each of their special populations. Their approaches are insightful and creative. If you are conducting a Career Choices program, are seriously considering its adoption, or are involved with educational restructuring at your school, you'll want to take the time to read these innovators' stories.

Phyllis Stewart - Vincennes, Indiana
    Learn how Phyllis, Tech Prep site coordinator and 30-year veteran teacher, integrated her Career Choices program with the English and computer keyboarding instructors. She shares her observations why an integrated approach works.

Georgette Phillips and Susan Levine--Victorville, California

    Learn how deliberate planning and taking advantage of Academic Innovations’ professional development opportunities led to the successful implementation of a Freshman Seminar course for all 9th-grade students.

Duval County Schools - Jacksonville, Florida

    Learn about the Freshman Transition course Duval County is implementing with all incoming freshmen at each of their 19 high schools. With solid planning on the "front end," ample professional development for implementing teachers, and frequent follow-up to provide support, this program is a model for good implementation.

Coachella Valley High School - Thermal, California

    Learn how a dynamic course required for all ninth graders helped turn this school's dropout rate -- from the highest in their district to the lowest.

Jerry Anderson - Clinton, Tennessee

Doug Campbell - San Gabriel, California

    Learn how Doug and his staff created and initiated a year-long interdisciplinary class in communications for 9th graders using the Career Choices curriculum. Due to the success of this program it will be a required class for all 9th graders in 1995-96. Good ideas for anyone restructuring or starting Tech Prep or School-to-Work programs.

Mary Ellen Fowler - Broward County, Florida

    Learn how English teacher Mary Ellen structures her class, Career Decision-Making and Critical Thinking Skills, in her school's Tech-Prep/School-to-Work program. She shares her innovative ideas, such as her exemplary speakers program and her parent orientation.

Roberta Freed - Little Falls, Minnesota

    Learn how English teacher Roberta and On-the-Job teacher Ron Hanenkamp created their integrated "Transitions" class for special education students. Roberta goes into detail that is sure to help any teacher with any population.

Priscilla Gregory - Vonore, Tennessee

    Learn how and why English teacher Priscilla has a guidance theme for her college bound students as well as her non-college prep students. Her unique community outreach program is worthy of replication.

Scott Hess - Tumwater, Washington

    Learn from English teacher Scott Hess how his interdisciplinary team of six instructors put together their program, winner of the 1994 Washington Educators Association's "Leaders in Restructuring Award" for innovative programs. Scott also shares their ideas for "Keys to Successful Teamwork."

Dr. Jim Campbell - Delaware State Tech Prep Consortium

    Learn from Jim, 1993 winner of the Parnell Award for exemplary Tech Prep programs nationwide, the secrets to developing a successful Tech Prep program. He shares his statistics and data and speaks to the need for comprehensive guidance.

Barbara Larson and Peg Slusarski - Columbus, Nebraska

    Learn from business teacher Barbara and English teacher Peg how they designed their class BECI (Business and English Curriculum Integration program). They go into detail on the planning and coordination process for with teammates and the administration.

Teri Redl - Medina County, Ohio

    Learn from School-to-Work Site Coordinator Teri how she developed her class for potential drop-outs and the details of how she organized her lesson plans. Her strategies clearly demonstrate the strength of combining academic skills improvement with individual support and guidance.

Lorraine Rippey and Wendy Hansloven - St. Marys Pennsylvania

    Learn how and why guidance counselors Lorraine and Wendy developed a classroom-based program where students get "ten months, instead of ten minutes of comprehensive guidance." Their team of three guidance counselors teach four periods a day in this Tech Prep program.

Pat Marabella - Havre, Montana

    Learn how Pat instilled a love of learning in his multi-cultural, at-risk group of students. Thirty percent of his students were Native American so his ideas for this population are worth looking at. Pre- and post-tests found significant increases in math and reading.

Nancy Carter - Denver, Colorado

    Learn how Nancy structured her Summer Youth Program and the students' significant gains in learning, based on their outside evaluation. One strong component was that each student who successfully completed the program (100% attendance among other markers) received one unit of credit toward graduation.

Zora Tammer - Berkeley, California

    Learn how Zora structured the six-hour day (over eight weeks) for reluctant learners that motivated and transformed the students who normally are turned-off by school.

Ron Eydenberg - Boston, Massachusetts

    Learn how Ron brought academics into the worksite for his 500 Summer JTPA participants and the benefits of this approach.

Eric Stephens - Los Angeles, California

    Learn how Eric adjusted his curriculum to the different learning styles of his at-risk population.

Deb Mumford - Denver, Colorado

    Learn about the findings of the external evaluator of this academic enrichment program for at-risk students. The staff also share their insights on why they think this program worked.

Anne Swygert - Greensboro, North Carolina

    Learn about Anne's seven-week summer JTPA program and some of her creative activities and approaches that exposed her students to a world they had never known.

Jessy James - Marshall, Minnesota

    Learn about Jessy's students' significant gains in their math and reading and to what he attributes to these gains in the post-testing.

Joe Werner - Monterey, California

    Learn about the strategies Joe used with his program for very high risk youth that, as he put it, "puts the needs of the students first." The strength of this program is the individualized attention each of his 78 students received.

John Gill - Hempstead, New York

    Learn how John adapted Career Choices and Possibilities to work with his population of 700 at-risk students with varying abilities.

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