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CBHS, King Receive Highest ‘Credentialed’ Rating from EL Education

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CBHS, King Receive Highest ‘Credentialed’ Rating from EL Education
Posted on 11/16/2015
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Casco Bay High School and King Middle School have been named by national school network EL Education (formerly called Expeditionary Learning) as among 14 newly “credentialed” schools in the United States.

Mark Conrad, chief schools officer at EL Education, said the two schools are “proof that there doesn’t have to be a trade-off between rigor and joy in teaching and learning. Demonstrating powerful results in EL Education’s three dimensions of achievement, they are focused on developing students’ character and their ability to solve real-world problems in addition to traditional measures.”

EL Education is a leading K-12 nonprofit focused on raising student achievement across diverse schools and communities. Combining challenging work with the joy of discovery and pride in mastery, EL Education prepares students to become contributing citizens with both the skills and character necessary for success throughout college, work and life.

Redefining how performance is measured in K-12 education, EL Education last year launched a new benchmarking process for schools in its network – encompassing measurements around character development and quality of student work in addition to test results. EL Education defines achievement as mastery in three areas, all of which are strongly associated with success in college and careers:

Student mastery of knowledge and skills. This factor takes into account how schools raised performance on state assessments/testing over a period of 4-6 years.

• Student character. EL schools establish consistent school-wide “habits of scholarship” (such as perseverance and responsibility), which are then tracked by students and teachers to provide evidence of growth over time.

• High-quality student work. Schools present evidence showing how the quality, depth, and authenticity of student work has improved during the school’s multiyear partnership with EL.

Both CBHS and King presented their credentialing portfolios to EL Education officials within the past few months. EL Education’s comprehensive credentialing process assesses whether schools have met these benchmarks and have documented growth over time.

"Becoming credentialed affirms the excellent work our faculty has done over 10 years in helping all students master essential skills and knowledge, create high quality work and become better humans,” said CBHS Principal Derek Pierce. “We are grateful to EL Education for all their support and coaching in helping us to achieve this milestone."

The 14 schools around that nation that received the designation as an EL Education Credentialed School include both urban and rural and both district and charter schools.

The 14 schools join nine other schools in the EL Education network that received the honor last year.

CBHS, founded in 2005, is a Mentor School within the EL Education network and is recognized as a national leader in project-based and “deeper” learning. King was a low-performing school when it partnered with EL in 1992, but has evolved to a top-performing school today that is considered to be in the forefront of national school reform.

PHOTO  CAPTION: Pictured are King Middle School Teachers who recently attended an EL Education conference. From left are Wendy Steele, ELA teacher; Caitlin LeClairp, teaching strategist; Bobby Shaddox, social studies teacher; and Pamela Porensky, math teacher.