One of our main goals is to close the achievement gap for all learners through shared decision-making, a rigorous curriculum, and student mobility based upon individual achievement, parent involvement, smaller class size, and highly qualified staffing. It is therefore, our vision that with the successful integration of business and leadership education into the instructional program, students at Executive Education Academy Charter School will learn from and will contribute to the business arena on many levels. Our partnerships with businesses and mentorship programs with community organizations will provide a unique educational experience for students to be successful in the business world. Our leadership program will develop students’ soft skills, so that they will excel in areas of management, communication, and sustainability.
Moreover, and most importantly our model addresses student resiliency. Students at risk of academic failure often face a complexity of problems due to poverty, health, and other social conditions that have made it difficult for them to succeed in school. The construct of “educational resilience” is not viewed as an attribute but as something that can be promoted by focusing on “alterable” factors that can impact an individual’s success in school. This approach does not focus on attributes such as ability, because ability has not necessarily been found to be a characteristic of resilient students. There are, several factors that have been found to influence resiliency in children.
- Social competence
- Problem-solving skills
- A sense of purpose
Our program addresses resiliency and has systems in place to support each factor that influences resiliency. Social Competence is addressed within our Guided Group Interaction (GGI). It uses the Boys Town Social Skills Curriculum to teach and educate students on social skills and prosocial behavior. We address problem-solving skills, by utilizing 10 skills that are embedded into our academic program. These skills are utilized on a daily basis to teach students how to overcome barriers and condition students to become more resilient. Another factor that we address is autonomy. Our leadership and character development component, teaches students to be self reliant, leaders, self-disciplined, and to take ownership onthemselves and others. This helps students to create a sense of one’s own identity, and an ability to exert some control over one’s own environment. Lastly, our program helps create a sense of purpose. Goal setting is discussed on a daily basis in GGI and our assembly process that takes place twice a day. These assemblies motivate students to accomplish daily goals. Our rating system gives students the necessary feedback to make changes and it is oriented around success, aspirations, sense of a compelling future, and a belief in a bright future. There are student systems in place to support the rating system, such as a pledge log, positive log, and executive elections that help students accomplish goal-directedness.
Executive Education Academy Charter School utilizes the 9 integrated principles to meet the demands of the common core and design our academic program. These were developed by a scan of design principles used by New York City Department of Education. These principles are highly researched by high performing school networks, and refined with the feedback and contributions of experienced educators. They integrate positive youth development to optimize student engagement and effort
- Prioritized master of rigorous standards aligned to college and career readiness
- Continuously improves its operations and model
- Develops and deploys collective strengths of staff
- Manages school operations effectively and efficiently
- Maintains an effective human capital strategy aligned with the school model and priorities
- Empowers and supports students through key transitions into and beyond high school
- Remains porous and connected (partnerships, access to community resources, knowledge sharing with other schools)
- Creates a clear mission and coherent culture
- Personalizes student learning to meet student needs
What encapsulates all of these design principals is our signature normative culture. Our normative culture model uses the intentional manipulation of norms to change anti-social behavior into pro-social behavior. According, to Grissom & Dubnov (1989) the implementation of a normative culture rests on three norms. They are:
- Treat others with respect
- Redirect all negative behavior
- Support all redirections