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SUCCESS STORIES
"Our primary goal is to narrow the education gap, but in doing so, we also narrow the social and cultural gap. "
Jaqueline Smethurst

There is tremendous variation in the types of partnerships being formed successfully-school to school, consortia, and new entities spun off from schools.  Here are a few of their stories.

Sage Hill School

A "whole school" model, Sage Hill involves all its faculty and students . . . .

Park Day School in Oakland, CA supports local public school students through students teaching students-reciprocally.  Park Day also offers professional development workshops that cover Differentiated K/1 Literacy Instruction, Teaching Mindfulness in the Classroom, and Reading Buddies-giving public school teachers tools they can use immediately in their classrooms. (Park Day teachers say preparing to present their curriculum helps sharpen their own focus and offers an opportunity to reflect on their own practice.) Its Mindful Schools program has been so successful nationally that it now has its own 501©3.

Through the Middle Grades Partnership in Maryland, nine private schools and eleven public schools come together, with support from the Baltimore Community Foundation, to provide comprehensive summer and after-school learning opportunities. There is much for all participants to give and get. Partners learn to step outside comfort zones and get to know others in a different, though complementary, world. The Middle Grades Partnership upends old ways of thinking. "You can't do this without me" becomes "We can't do this without each other."

Ann Klotz, Head of Laurel School, wanted to connect with a Cleveland public school "in a sustained effort that would braid our two schools together in meaningful ways over a long period of time." In 2009, Laurel School formed a unique partnership with Warner Girls Leadership Academy to create NorthStar Collaborative, a six week summer academy for skill building and leadership development. Students remain connected throughout the school year participating in tutoring programs, attending community events, and growing a garden together. Faculty at both schools work in tandem to share strengths and deepen their reflective practice. See NorthStar in action!

When Sonoma Academy moved to a new campus in the foothills of Santa Rosa, California, the school seized the opportunity to build on its mission of engaging with the surrounding community, on its commitment to a sustainable environment, and on its award-winning CONNECTIONS program. Wingspan Partnerships helps Sonoma Academy build and expand partnerships with the local public elementary schools that use the energies of its creative faculty  for the good of the whole community and all its learners-shaping the school's own future in the process.

And More

 

On the Map

Partner: John Marshall School, Maurice J. Tobin K-8 School, & Mission Hill School

Since: 2010

Contact: Andy Gallagher, Teresa Harvey-Jackson

Type of Partnership: Teach

Story: For five years, The Learning Project has been running—at nominal or no charge—a three week, intensively academic, summer program called August Scholars. It is designed to stem summer learning loss and our target group is rising fourth, fifth and sixth grade students who are under-performing academically and who are from families who are unable to afford high-quality academic intervention in the summer. We work closely with three Boston Public Schools to recruit these students and to ensure that parents bring them for each day of the program. For the three weeks with us these students spend all morning and part of the afternoon honing academic skills. Midday they have a recreational/educational component —dance, drama, sports--and then they do a final hour of academics before dismissal. They work in groups of ten. We hire only the best teachers who know how to use every minute of the day intentionally and productively, and who know how to transform sluggish, often defeated, learners into competent and eager students. Our goal is to have our Scholars return to school in September scholastically and personally stronger than when they left in June. With laser focus we work to bolster skills, build self confidence, develop self-advocacy, and raise sights. The post test results are astounding, and the anecdotal evidence--from teachers and principals (and the Scholars, too) --of new attitudes and resolve is encouraging. Most return, if they can, the next summer.


Partner: The Hockaday School & Sudie Williams

Since: 2010

Contact: Laura Day (Hockaday School), Lorena Hernandez (Sudie Williams)

Type of Partnership: Mentor, Tutor, Teach, Service Project, Environmental

Story: The Hockaday School has a long-standing history of volunteering with DISD schools, and has recently adopted Sudie L. Williams Elementary as a school in which Hockaday plans to focus much of their efforts. Just a few miles from Hockaday, Sudie Williams is well situated for easy access throughout the day and for a partnership. Throughout the week, Hockaday student volunteers make daily trips to Sudie Williams to tutor students at the school. Hockaday Upper School students serve as the tutors and the work with children of all ages at Sudie Williams. Having an extra hand in a classroom or the opportunity to give a struggling student one-on-one attention in a busy classroom is invaluable to the teachers at Sudie Williams. In addition, the Hockaday students work on their teaching skills, develop patience, and truly see the impact they have on a given student or within a classroom while they are volunteering. Another way Hockaday students are improving academic success of the Sudie Williams students is through a program called Reading Partners. This program has been established as a proven way to help students reach their full potential and completely catch up to their grade-appropriate reading level. Hockaday volunteers went through a training and use Reading Partners curriculum to work one-on-one with students at Sudie Williams and help improve their reading skills. In addition, the 4th grade students at Hockaday have begun to encourage reading at a young age by working with the Head Start students at the school. The 4th grade Hockaday girls planned their own lessons for the Head Start kids and will go into the school two times per year to read and engage in an educational activity with the children. Hockaday students are working with Sudie Williams students on physical growth and development, as well. One of the Upper School dance classes took time out of their schedule to teach a dance clinic to the PE classes of 2nd, 3rd, and 4th grade students at Sudie Williams one day. The Hockaday girls planned the music and choreography for the class, performed for the students, and helped the PE classes choreograph their own dances. The St. Mark’s School of Texas, the brother school of Hockaday, is also working with Sudie Williams in the fitness and physical well-being realm. Boys from the St. Mark’s soccer team hold multiple soccer clinics with the students at the school and have donated 80 new soccer balls for the children. After all their hard work in the soccer clinic, the St. Mark’s boys are taking all the Sudie Williams soccer players to a professional soccer game. Since sports clinic opportunities are so rare among the Sudie Williams students, it is great that Hockaday and St. Mark’s students are able to help provide enrichment activities for the children. In the Spring of 2012, as Hockaday became more involved with the school, students noticed that the hallways at the school were drab and in need of fresh paint. With the input from the Sudie Williams administration, a Hockaday senior worked to create a design for a mural to paint in the school halls and stairwells. After the design was decided upon, a group of Hockaday students went to the school and spent a morning using bright colors to paint inspirational quotes throughout the school. The painting added a needed burst of color to the Sudie Williams facility, and made the school a more welcoming place for elementary students. In addition to improving the appearance of the school, Hockaday students have made Sudie Williams a recipient of multiple school-wide drives Hockaday students participate in throughout the year. From the drives Hockaday coordinates, Sudie Williams has received coats in the fall, gifts during the holiday season, and essential needs (i.e., socks, underwear, toothbrushes) in the springtime. Hockaday has also made an effort to include Sudie Williams in cultural and educational events, opportunities, and productions throughout the year. In 2013, the Hockaday and St. Mark’s students are putting on a stage production of High School Musical, and children and families from Sudie Williams will be invited to attend the show for free during the final dress rehearsal. Hockaday has also shared professional development and parenting lectures with faculty and parents from Sudie Williams, inviting them to Hockaday’s campus for various events. Finally, Hocakday is partnering with Commit! Dallas, an organization that is working to ensure Dallas students realize their full potential. Commit! and Hockaday are adopting Sudie Williams students to forge a strong foundation for the program and are hoping to fully support the school and educational success of all the children at Sudie Williams. This program not only empowers students and families but improves the city of Dallas through education and guidance. As one of the leading private schools in the nation, Hockaday is determined to share resources and with schools, and is beginning by working to completely partner with Suide L. Williams Elementary.


Partner: Westminster School & Hartford Public High School

Since: 2002

Contact: Todd Eckerson

Type of Partnership: Other

Story: The Crossroads Cooperative Learning Program (CCLP) was incorporated in 2002 as a response to issues contributing to low graduation rates at Hartford Public High School. In 2011, CCLP officially became part of Westminster School. During a yearlong process, CCLP – which had previously been an independent 501(c)(3) organization to which Westminster loaned the director’s services – dissolved itself and transferred its assets. The new organization is now known as Westminster Crossroads Learning Program in Hartford (WCLP). What has not changed is Crossroads’ mission – to serve the needs of students from Hartford, especially Hartford Public High School. WCLP uses a three-pronged approach: summer academic enrichment, school-year after-school meetings, and career and college counseling. WCLP’s summer program occurs in Hartford and aims to build the intellectual confidence necessary for students to flourish in their high school curriculum and beyond. WCLP’s seven-week summer program emphasizes individualized attention. WCLP’s school-year after-school program occurs at Hartford Public High School and focuses on “Walkabouts,” SAT preparation, and college and career planning sessions. After each marking period, adult volunteers accompany students on “Walkabouts” to visit with their teachers. WCLP offers preparation for the SAT via the “Sit for SAT” Initiative. And through the college and career counseling program, WCLP seeks to offer Hartford Public High School students the same general type of planning available to students in private schools. Another feature of WCLP is The Bridge to Hartford Initiative that aims to strengthen ties between the independent school world and Hartford-region high schools. While the WCLP summer and school-year programs are limited to Hartford Public High School students, the Bridge to Hartford Initiative seeks to extend the scope of WCLP by allowing its director to help place students at independent schools, primarily as postgraduates. Over the years, WCLP has, in one form or another, helped place such students at ten different New England private schools.


Partner: Brooklyn Friends School, Brooklyn PS 307, Brooklyn PS 287, & Brooklyn PS 46

Since: 2008

Contact: Taunya Black and Rachel Webber

Type of Partnership: Teach, Other

Story: Now in its third year of operation, Horizons at Brooklyn Friends School (BFS) is in in full swing with 44 children in the first, second, and third grade. The program, located in downtown Brooklyn, serves children who live in the Farragut, Ingersoll, and Whitman public housing neighborhoods. Participating students receive an eight-year comprehensive private school education, as well as enrichment opportunities, which aim to boost their love of learning and prevent them from sliding academically during the summer months. BFS staff works very closely with the principals of the public schools, who sit on the Horizons Board, with the public schools' parent coordinators and with the students' teachers. This ensures a smooth recruitment process and seamless coordination in using the same pedagogical language in monitoring progress and providing consistent intervention. A recent grant has enabled our new reading specialist to work closely with children who are in need of intervention. Morning instruction is devoted to meeting time, recreation on the school's rooftop playground, work in reading groups, and math games. Children are divided into reading groups based on pre-, mid-, and post-assessments using DIBELS through Wireless Generation. Enrichment opportunities include: Swim instruction at the nearby Long Island University pool, dance class with a professional dancer from the Mark Morris Dance Group, ceramics instruction, computer class, and weekly field trips. This year’s trips include the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, the Brooklyn Audubon Center (fishing contest), Staten Island Children’s Museum, and the Brooklyn Children’s Museum.


Partner: Dedham Country Day School & Dedham Public Schools

Since: 2009

Contact: Meredith Laban

Type of Partnership: Teach, Other

Story: In 2009, Dedham Country Day School opened the doors of its Horizons National Student Enrichment Program to students from low-income families in Dedham and Boston. Horizons students attend reading, math, and science enrichment classes, as well as engage in swimming, music, arts, and sports activities. The students also explore the metropolitan Boston area, including the Franklin Park Zoo, Boston Aquarium, Blue Hills Reservation, Brookline Puppet Theater, and an urban farm. Qualifying students take part in this enriching summer program for a nominal registration fee; they receive free breakfast, lunch, snacks, and transportation. Dedham Country Day School is excited about its partnership with Horizons as its seeks to embrace an inclusive, interdependent community of students, teachers, and parents and inspire all students to become caring, ethical members of the larger world. We all look forward to watching Horizons at Dedham Country Day School grow over the coming years.


Partner: Noble & Greenough School & Lawrence High School

Since: 1989

Contact: Erika Guy (Noble & Greenough), Marcela Maldonado (Lawrence)

Type of Partnership: Mentor, Tutor, Teach

Story: As the first and most basic tenet of the mission of Noble and Greenough School, our community is dedicated to "inspiring leadership for the public good". To that end, Nobles continues to be committed to cultivating purposeful citizenship on local, national and global levels. Currently, Nobles has many on-going partnerships with local and global organizations and schools. While partnering and service are a "way of being", listed below is a small sampling of ongoing initiatives and programs: •UPWARD BOUND at Nobles: our on-campus summer UB program is in its 22nd year. Students from Lawrence MA. public high school attend our 6-week educational program which is run in conjunction with UMASS-Boston. Nobles graduates and faculty are staff counselors, teaching fellows and teachers in the program. Throughout the school year, UB students return to our campus one Saturday per month for workshops, college counseling, etc. •Community Servings in Boston (students work there 3 afternoons per week, we have a standing service day on MLK Day and a yearly connection via our on-campus summer service camp) •Roxbury Prep Charter School, Boston (where our students tutor three days per week throughout the school year) •Epiphany School, Boston (where students refurbish classrooms every summer through our on campus summer service camp) •Riverdale, Oakdale & Avery Elementary Schools, Dedham (where our Children's Literature Class students, as well as students in our afternoon community service program, are involved in reading programs and after school mentoring programs) •Stonewall Farm & Education Center, Keene NH (where our students spend one week each summer in service to the farm) •Romanian Children's Relief (where our students bring much needed supplies and spend 2 weeks each March working with Romanian orphans) •ACHIEVE at Nobles (our 6 week Summer Enrichment Program for 5th, 6th and 7th graders from Boston Elementary Schools) •Partnering with the town of Dedham each spring to host the Annual Stamp Out Hunger Drive, the key initiative for the Dedham Food Pantry


Partner: William Penn Charter School & Widener Memorial School

Since: 1992

Contact: Jim Ballengee (Penn Charter), George Eastburn (Widener)

Type of Partnership: Mentor, Tutor, Teach, Service Project

Story: Penn Charter's relationship with Widener Memorial School goes back almost twenty years. A student entering Penn Charter in pre-K will have at least four different service learning experiences with Widener students over the course of their career here. Fourth graders bag food with Widener students at a local food recovery agency, sixth graders work on writing and composition with Widener students and seniors take an Art of Caring elective in which they learn about disability.


Partner: St. Philip's Academy & Sussex Avenue Elementary School

Since: 2010

Contact: Fiorella Serrano

Type of Partnership: Teach, Environmental, Other

Story: For the past 20 years, St. Philip’s Academy has been making quality education accessible to Newark students, regardless of a family’s ability to pay tuition. The school’s partnership with Horizons has been the logical next step toward extending the benefits of the independent school’s facilities and educational philosophy to more children who are in danger of falling into the documented achievement gap largely attributed to summer learning loss. Summer curriculum focuses on reading comprehension, writing across the curriculum, mathematics and science. Creative arts are woven into the curriculum through art, music, drama and “ancient technologies” (weaving, knitting, Chinese picture books, Kumihimo braiding, etc.). Swimming, recreational sports and body awareness activities further support the educational program. The EcoSPACES Program is unique feature which is not offered at other Horizons affiliate programs. EcoSPACES is a multidimensional co-curricular program, designed to give students the tools to lead healthy and environmentally productive lives in the 21st century. Utilizing unique learning environments, we seek to inspire students to embrace the highest principles of environmental and nutritional stewardship. It is our hope that students will make informed decisions for living a life that benefits their bodies and our planet, while understanding the interconnectedness of all living things. The EcoSPACES curriculum is integrated into all subject areas. We utilize all of our physical learning environments (Teaching Kitchen, Rooftop Garden, Dining Hall, Electronic HVAC Monitoring System, Closed-Loop Food System, etc.) to bring our curriculum to “life” through hands-on learning opportunities. The goal of the program is to empower students with a complete understanding of our relationship to the natural world and the importance of being stewards of the earth and their own health. By utilizing the various learning environments, students learn how food grows, how to turn the harvest into made from scratch consumable meals (not processed foods), and the importance of gathering at the table as a community. In addition, students develop their knowledge base of sustainable behaviors and ecological responsibility. Students walk away with a deep understanding of the cycle’s effects on the health of their bodies, minds and the planet.


Partner: Marymount School of New York & St. Stephens of Hungary School

Since: Summer of 2009

Contact: Lillian Issa (Marymount), Katherine Peck (St. Stephens)

Type of Partnership: Mentor, Tutor, Teach, Other

Story: Marymount School of New York is an all-girls, N-XII, mission-driven school, deeply rooted in the goals and criteria of the Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary, our founders. The creation of our outreach program was inspired by a phrase in our mission statement, "Challenge, Shape, and Change,” which underscores everything the School aspires to do: to raise competent, confident, balanced young woman who will be motivated and inspired to change the world for the better. The School is already deeply committed to and involved with numerous volunteer services, a philanthropic curriculum, and fund-raising activities, but the outreach program offers the entire school community (teachers, students, parents, alumnae) an opportunity to get involved, give back, and serve the children in our city. Given the challenging state of affairs in public schools in New York City, the many school closings of parochial schools, and the fragility of families in lower income areas, there is clearly a need for an outreach program. Research indicates that more time in school, greater exposure to extracurricular activities, and intense academic immersion has enormous benefits for children in disadvantaged home situations. It is obvious, therefore, that a school with the caliber of a Marymount education and the commitment of a generous community has much to offer. In union with our school-wide goal last year, "To awaken a consciousness of social justice,” we began phase one of our outreach program by offering full scholarships to several students from a neighboring school, enabling them to attend our six week summer drama and science camps. We selected students who were recommended by the school principal of St. Stephens of Hungary, with whom we had developed a relationship over the years through our Upper School Butler Scholar program, another scholarship program fully supported by the school’s operating budget. In the upcoming year we will be developing our outreach to extend beyond our summer enrichment, to include academic preparation in math, reading and writing throughout the school year, as well as four consecutive summers. Our ultimate goal is to select groups of approximately 25 rising 6th graders per year from other targeted schools in the neighborhood and to prepare them academically, socially and emotionally for successful entrance into strong public and/or independent high schools in New York City. Using Marymount’s curriculum as a backbone, especially its unique connection to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, its focus on STEM and its strong integration of the arts, we are confident that we can “challenge, shape, and change” our school community and the lives of children in our city.


Partner: The Salisbury School & Wicomico County Public Schools

Since: 2003

Contact: Harlan Eagle

Type of Partnership: Teach, Other

Story: Each year, students from Wicomico County Public Schools experience a world of opportunity and academic enrichment through the Horizons program at The Salisbury School. The multi-year summer intervention program incorporates academic classes in reading, writing, math and science, swimming lessons, and recreational and cultural enrichment opportunities. Program highlights include group trips to the National Aquarium in Baltimore, theatrical performances, and swimming lessons.


Partner: Greens Farms Academy & Bridgeport Public Schools

Since: 2000

Contact: Alex Lunding, Monique Rutledge

Type of Partnership: Teach, Other

Story: In the summer of 2000, Horizons at Greens Farms Academy held its first six-week summer session with 26 kindergarten and first grade students, and reached full capacity in 2007 with 144 students in kindergarten through eighth grade. Programming has been extended throughout the school year with the Horizons at GFA Saturday Academy. We continue to assist our graduates as they transition to high school and plan for college. Since its inception, Horizons at GFA has helped hundreds of Bridgeport students achieve success in school. Horizons at Green Farms Academy is committed to helping the underserved youth of Bridgeport succeed in school, build confidence, and realize their full potential. Guided by a professional and nurturing faculty in small group settings, the program emphasizes academics, but also encompasses cultural enrichment, the arts, technology, swimming and other activities. The Horizons program provides experiences for students in Grades K-8 that strengthen academic performance; build awareness of the outside world; and foster inquisitiveness, creativity, self-discipline, problem-solving, organizational skills, and a sense of community responsibility.


Partner: Holy Innocents’ Episcopal School & Fulton County School District

Since: 1999

Contact: Scott Tucker

Type of Partnership: Tutor, Teach, Other

Story: The Horizons program at Holy Innocents’ Episcopal School began in 1999 with a kindergarten class of twelve students. Horizons Summer Curriculum uses hands-on, experiential learning & project-based activities that make learning fun. Students enjoy classes in reading, creative writing, math, science, computers, art and music. Friday Field Trips and regular sports activities add to the fun. Students learn how to swim, a valuable life skill that builds self-confidence and enthusiasm for new challenges in and out of the classroom. In addition, Holy Innocents’ hosts Saturday Programs, engaging students throughout the school year to support the academic gains they make during the summer. Sixth graders receive homework help while Seventh and Eighth graders learn how to run a small business in an engaging, interactive environment. The Atlanta Silverbacks’ Players also lead a soccer clinic for all middle school students. Finally, the Parenting Connection increases parents’ awareness of their child’s educational needs and experiences. It facilitates communication between Horizons parents and the program. Representatives from the Parents’ Council serve on the Horizons Board of Directors.


Partner: Colorado Academy & Knapp Elementary School

Since: 1998

Contact: Ingrid Moore

Type of Partnership: Teach, Other

Story: Colorado Academy's beautiful, 95 acre campus provides a perfect setting for Horizons, a fully-enrolled, long-term enrichment program for K-8 public school students. Similar to other Horizons programs across the country, there is a strong academic summer program that includes social and cultural experiences, weekly field trips to reinforce academic and cultural learning, sports activities, daily swimming lessons and recreational swimming. Highly skilled teachers focus on student goal-setting, and reading/writing instruction with math/science project-based activities that insure students are fully engaged in the learning process. Colorado Academy provides student transportation and two hot, nutritious meals daily. In addition, all Horizons students receive library cards and are able to borrow books weekly from Colorado Academy's. An annual tradition is to send home 4 to 6 new books per child every summer to build a home library, as well. In the winter, parent/child social gatherings and Super Saturday Science classes are held at Colorado Academy to maintain the connection between children, families, and Horizons. This program began in 1998 with one purposefully small class of 13 kindergarten children from local Denver public schools and has grown to host over 100 students. The new Kindergarten students who arrive in mid-June will return to Horizons each year through their eighth grade summer, resulting in an enhanced ability to learn and function positively in their community. Over time, a strong relationship has developed with one public school located in a nearby Spanish-speaking community; the majority of the Horizons students at Colorado Academy now come from this school, Knapp Elementary School, and are selected based on specific Horizons criteria.


Partner: St. Richard's School, Indianapolis PS 60, & Indianapolis PS 48

Since: 1996

Contact: Cammy Dubie

Type of Partnership: Teach, Other

Story: Horizons at St. Richard’s School is part of Kaleidoscope Youth Center (KYC), a community-based, United Way agency dedicated to providing low-income families with affordable out of school enrichment programming. KYC's mission is to offer hope and guidance to youth in the community through enrichment programs, conflict resolution, educational support, and recreational activities. KYC provides after school programming five days a week and a summer day camp at a local public school. Horizons at St. Richard’s was founded in 1996 with 12 kindergarten students and has grown to include students through eighth grade. In 2011, the program entered a rebuilding phase and plans to host 60 K-3 students in the summer. Partnerships have been formed with two Indianapolis Public Schools (School 60 and School 48), both within a mile from St. Richard’s School. In the six-week academic enrichment program, the mornings will emphasize math, reading, and writing. Each classroom will be taught by an experienced classroom teacher from local public and private elementary schools as well as a college student or recent graduate and a high school intern. This team teaching approach will allow for differentiated instruction and innovative teaching methods. Enrichment activities will be offered in the afternoon and are designed by the teaching staff based on their passion and expertise. Offerings may include science, music, art, sports, dance, and technology. Swimming will also be offered through a partnership with Butler University and their swim instructors.


Partner: Rumson Country Day School & Red Bank Borough Public Schools

Since: 1996

Contact: Carolyn Weaver

Type of Partnership: Teach, Other

Story: In 1996, a former New Canaan Country School Horizons teacher began the Horizons Student Enrichment Program at Rumson Country Day School. The program opened with 24 kindergarten students from a nearby public elementary school and has expanded to include K - 8 students from local public schools. The Rumson Horizons program provides a morning filled with creative academics and an afternoon composed of art, athletics, swimming, and computer education. Children learn to swim in private pools at homes adjacent to the school. Fridays are reserved for cultural trips and the program makes good use of its prime geographical location close to the New Jersey shore, as well as to metropolitan Philadelphia and New York. Local dentists, pediatricians and social workers donate their time to Horizons, providing free services for the students.


Partner: Radcliffe Creek School & Kent County Public School District

Since: 1996

Contact: Connie Schroth

Type of Partnership: Teach, Environmental, Other

Story: The Horizons program at Radcliffe Creek School runs for six weeks in early summer, 9-3, five days a week. Days begin with breakfast and two hours of individual and small group reading, writing and math instruction. After lunch, students swim at a beautiful new community pool, or have enrichment experiences in science, social studies and the arts. We partner with Sultana Projects to canoe on local creeks and with Echo Hill Outdoor School for environmental education, taking advantage of the rural nature of our location. We are looking forward to having approximately 70 children, grades K-4, at our six-week summer program this year and are hoping to serve older students as we continue to grow.


Partner: Harley School & Rochester City School District

Since: 1995

Contact: Luis A. Perez

Type of Partnership: Mentor, Environmental, Other

Story: The Horizons program at the Harley School began in 1995 with 24 students in grades 1 - 2. In 2010, the program served 130 students in grades K – 8. The summer program is a blend of academic, cultural, and recreational activities that are designed to be fun and enriching with the purpose of developing and enhancing self-esteem and promoting the value of learning. The program has several measurable goals to assess success and to maintain focus on the Horizons mission. A new initiative for Horizons graduates is currently underway. BRIDGES is a traditional wooden boat building and environmental education program for recent graduates of Horizons and similar age students from The Harley School. This hands-on, multi-faceted approach to education and youth development provides a diverse group of young people with cultural exchange and experiential learning opportunities. Students are engaged in the linked activities of boat building, learning to row and sail the boats, and using the boats in activities promoting Genesee River stewardship. The BRIDGES program is a partnership between Horizons and Harley and works to support both missions through educational enrichment, diversity experience, peer-peer and youth-adult partnerships, academic support, and positive youth development. By combining meaningful, collaborative work, the tangible results associated with such work, and active mentoring along with academic and life skills support, BRIDGES provides unique opportunities that allow participants to actively mature in the context of a safe, supportive, and encouraging environment.


Partner: New Canaan Country School & Fairfield School District

Since: 1964

Contact: Leah Kimmet

Type of Partnership: Mentor, Tutor, Other

Story: Horizons began at New Canaan Country School in 1964 as a multi-faceted summer enrichment program for 20 children from low-income families in Fairfield County, Connecticut. Today the program serves over 300 students year round in grades K – 12. The year-round program includes both the summer program and the Winter Connection. The Winter Connection maintains contact with Horizons students over the winter months through Saturday school, enrichment lessons, tutoring, parenting programs, cultural events, parties and trips. Approximately 75% of summer program students go on to participate in Winter Connection. Horizons at New Canaan Country School established an Outreach Program in 1997. This program continues the relationship between Horizons and its students as they transition to high school and college. In 2000, the Outreach Program began pairing adult mentors with Horizons high school students in an effort to help these young people reach their goals. More than 120 students currently participate in the Outreach Program. In the fall of 2001, Horizons at New Canaan Country School also initiated a mentoring program, the Horizons Friends Corps. New Canaan Country School eighth graders are paired with energetic Horizons fourth graders, further strengthening the ties between Country School and Horizons.


Partner: Stone Ridge School of the Sacred Heart & Excel Academy Public Charter School for Girls

Since: 2010

Contact: Kathryn Gillick (Stone Ridge), Kaye Savage (Excel Academy)

Type of Partnership: Service Project, Other

Story: In the Fall of 2010, Stone Ridge and Excel began to build a partnership based on dialogue and the desire to build a mutually beneficial relationship between students as well as faculty and staff. Together, they have articulated five areas of collaboration, and in the coming years, they will create opportunities for members of each community to grow and learn with each other. These five areas include expansion of Stone Ridge's Social Action service learning program, collaboration around professional development, sharing of intellectual and practical resources, exploring peer-to-peer interaction between Excel and Stone Ridge students at all ages, and encouraging alumnae to learn and participate in the partnership.


Partner: Sonoma Academy & Cook Middle School

Since: 2010

Contact: John Durgin

Type of Partnership: Mentor

Story: Recognizing that a successful high school experience relies on decisions made during middle school and that teenagers can have a significant impact on middle-school-aged students, Lawrence Cook Middle School and Sonoma Academy created the Peer Mentor Project. Students from each school meet on a regular basis to share experiences and discuss the challenges facing middle school students. Topics range from study skills and how to prepare for high school studies to how to avoid drugs and other activities that make do not support a successful high experience. As a result of the mentoring relationship, middle school students expand their aspirations and high school students develop important leadership skills.


Partner: Sonoma Academy & Taylor Mountain Elementary School

Since: 2008

Contact: John Durgin

Type of Partnership: Tutor, Teach, Other

Story: Conversations between the Taylor Mountain School representative and Sonoma Academy generated a number of opportunities beneficial to both schools. Given the critical need to improve math proficiency among Taylor Mountain students, the two schools developed a teacher sharing plan whereby a math teacher from Sonoma Academy is given release time in order to spend a period each day collaborating with the classroom teacher at Taylor Mountain School and providing assistance in the classroom. Teachers at Sonoma Academy are delighted to have the opportunity to support Taylor Mountain School in a very significant way. To provide students at Taylor Mountain with homework support, the two schools also created the Homework Club. Each Wednesday afternoon, Sonoma Academy students work one-on-one with Taylor Mountain students on homework assignments on their school campus. After homework is completed, there is time for outside activities. In response to additional cuts in public spending, Sonoma Academy students are developing arts and sports programming that will launch this fall. To address the issue of students falling behind during the summer months, Taylor Mountain School and Sonoma Academy, along with Kawana Elementary School, created a free weeklong summer camp. In addition to a variety of arts and sports activities, campers learn to program robots in a Lego robotics course. Sonoma Academy students develop meaningful relationships, practice leadership and find real satisfaction in their campers’ joy.


Partner: Sonoma Academy & Kawana Elementary School

Since: 2006

Contact: John Durgin

Type of Partnership: Other

Story: Given funding cuts in public school arts programs and the strong music program at Sonoma Academy, representatives from Kawana Elementary School and Sonoma Academy decided to launch a music program for Kawana 5th grade students focused on ukulele, an inexpensive relatively easy instrument to learn to play. Sonoma Academy solicited donations of ukuleles from its own community; each semester, the music director at SA teaches a group of SA students to play and teach the ukulele. On Wednesday afternoons, SA students meet Kawana Elementary students on their campus for music lessons. SA students reinforce their own learning while sharing with younger students. In the spring, the Kawana Elementary students perform at a Sonoma Academy community meeting. This year, Sonoma Academy brought a professional ukulele player, James Hill, to Kawana Elementary for a special concert.


Partner: Campbell Hall & Westchester High School

Since: 2009

Contact: Eileen Powers & David Watts (Campbell Hall), Darin Earley (Westchester)

Type of Partnership: Mentor, Other

Story: Campbell Hall (Episcopal) and Westchester High School both had mentoring groups devoted to African-American boys. Our goal was to help them de-mystify stereotypes which all of them endure, as well as the stereotypes they have of each other coming from independent school/public school environments. They held a summit at Loyola Marymount University, followed by visits to each other's campuses including classes and social time. Their experiences and observations were recorded in a DVD "Education Unlocked," which was presented at a workshop for the 2010 People of Color Conference. (View "Education Unlocked" at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GzFh0Bct3c8) The next step will be to add the girls' mentoring groups in 2011-12.


Partner: Laurel School & Warner Girls Leadership Academy

Since: 2009

Contact: Holly Fidler

Type of Partnership: Mentor, Tutor, Other

Story: The North Star Collaborative (NSC) is a partnership between Laurel School, a K-12 independent school for girls in Shaker Heights, Ohio, and Warner Girls Leadership Academy, a Cleveland public school serving girls in grades K-8, to promote the attainment of a four year college degree and raise awareness of the realities of urban education. The Collaborative has three strands to braid two school communities together: shared learning experiences, a summer academy and professional development. This July, during the NSC Summer Academy under the guidance of Laurel and Warner faculty and staff members, as well as Laurel high school students and recent Laurel alums, the North Stars- who are now fifth and sixth graders- read a novel a week and conquered algebra with a program called Hands-On-Equations. They also had fitness, nutrition and social skills courses. Each North Star wrote/illustrated pieces for our bi-weekly newsletter AND completed a 5K run/walk to culminate the summer! We are looking forward to a similarly enriching school year!


Partner: Sage Hill School & Edward B. Cole Academy

Since: 2011

Contact: Jason Gregory (Sage), Kitty Fortner (EBC)

Type of Partnership: Mentor, Tutor, Teach, Service Project, Environmental, Other

Story: New for 2011-2012 school year, Sage Hill 9th grade will partner with EBC 3rd grade, where Sage students will teach/mentor EBC students in the area of Science Education (labs, organic gardening,Science Fair exhibits, etc).


Partner: Sage Hill School & El Sol Academy

Since: 2006

Contact: Jason Gregory (Sage), Ivet Gonzalez (El Sol)

Type of Partnership: Mentor, Tutor, Teach, Service Project, Environmental, Other

Story: Sage Hill 9th grade partners with El Sol 3rd grade, where Sage students teach/mentor El Sol students in the area of Science Education (labs, organic gardening,Science Fair exhibits, etc). Sage Hill 10th grade partners with El Sol 4th grade, where Sage students teach/mentor El Sol students in the area of Literacy (short story, poetry, play-writing, etc).


Partner: Sage Hill School & Killybrooke Elemetary School

Since: 2004

Contact: Jason Gregory (Sage), Cynthia Ridens (Killybrooke)

Type of Partnership: Mentor, Tutor, Teach, Service Project, Environmental, Other

Story: Sage Hill 9th grade partners with Killybrooke 3rd grade, where Sage students teach/mentor Killybrooke students in the area of Science Education (labs, organic gardening,Science Fair exhibits, etc). Sage Hill 10th grade partners with Killybrooke 4th grade, where Sage students teach/mentor Killybrooke students in the area of Literacy (short story, poetry, play-writing, etc).


Partner: Sage Hill School & Wilson Elementary School

Since: 2002

Contact: Jason Gregory (Sage), Julie Perron (Wilson)

Type of Partnership: Mentor, Tutor, Teach, Service Project, Environmental, Other

Story: Sage Hill 10th grade partners with Wilson 4th grade, where Sage students teach/mentor Wilson students in the area of Literacy (short story, poetry, play-writing, etc).


Partner: Park Day School & Oakland Unified School District

Since: 1996

Contact: Tom Little (Park Day), Wendi Caporicci (Oakland Unified)

Type of Partnership: Mentor, Teach, Service Project, Other

Story: In 1996, Park Day School entered into a partnership with its neighbor, Emerson Elementary School. The schools have partnered in providing teacher workshops, neighborhood disaster planning, neighborhood cleanup, literacy programs, book drives, and anti-bullying curriculum development. Since that time, Park Day School has expanded its partnerships throughout the Oakland Unified School District, including collaboration with charter schools and the central district office.


Partner: Friends School of Baltimore, ConneXions Leadership Academy, & Hampstead Hill Academy

Since: 2005

Contact: Felicia Wilks (Friends School), Cynthia Wilson (ConneXions), Matthew Hornbeck (Hampstead Hill)

Type of Partnership: Mentor, Tutor, Teach, Service Project, Environmental, Other

Story: Friends School was a founding member of Middle Grades Partnership, an organization created to bring together teachers and students in Baltimore's public and private schools. Each year, teachers at Friends, ConneXions, and Hampstead Hill come together to plan an enriching academic program for our students in the summer. During these planning sessions, teachers from all three schools learn from and share with each other. Similarly, the resulting program is one that allows students from very different schools to practice skills necessary for success as well as to learn in partnership with students from schools very different from their own. Adults and students alike are enriched by our partnership.


Partner: Garrison Forest School & Baltimore Leadership School for Young Women

Since: 2008

Contact: Whitty Ransome (GFS), Maureen Colburn (BLSYW)

Type of Partnership: Mentor, Teach, Service Project

Story: Baltimore Leadership School for Young Women (BLSYW) opened its doors in September 2009 with 120 girls in grade 6 with plans to add another grade each year using a lottery system. BLSYW is the second girls' public school to be launched in over 50 years. Faculties from BLSYW and GFS have already worked together during a professional development workshop on Girls and Brain Research. Middle School girls from GFS and BLSYW will be doing service and learning projects together in 2011-12. A joint student leadership conference is also in planning stages.

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