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EL Education Announces 2017 Mentor Schools

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    Katie Park

EL Education (formerly Expeditionary Learning), a leading K-12 non-profit that is redefining student achievement in diverse communities across the country, has announced two new Mentor Schools, bringing the total number to 14. These exemplary EL Education schools have reached the organization's high standards for quality and have demonstrated a readiness and willingness to share their expertise with the newest schools in its network.

The two 2017 EL Education Mentor Schools are:

Jocelyn Hardy, superintendent of Arbor Vitae-Woodruff School District, said that AV-W’s  commitment to EL Education has fostered a culture of continuous improvement among its staff and students. “Arbor Vitae-Woodruff is committed to empowering each student to make a positive difference and to achieve personal greatness. Serving a term as an EL Education Mentor School supports our vision and drive toward that goal,” Hardy said.

“Being a relatively new EL Education program, we are excited to share our processes and learning curves with newer programs. The help we received was invaluable and provided us with many effective ideas related to strategy and structure. We look forward to sharing what has worked for our charter, and supporting other schools as they develop their own EL Education traditions,”  said David Manahan, Director of Sierra Expeditionary Learning School.

EL Education Mentor Schools are a subset of the 28 EL Education Credentialed Schools, located in communities across the country, which excel in three dimensions of student achievement powerfully associated with success in college, career and life:

  • Student Mastery of Knowledge and Skills: Students demonstrate proficiency and deeper understanding across disciplines, apply their learning, think critically, and communicate clearly.
  • Student Character: Students work to develop mindsets and skills for success in college, career and life, treat others well and stand up for what is right, and contribute to a better world by applying their learning to improve their communities.
  • High-Quality Student Work:  Students create original and authentic work that demonstrates higher order thinking and craftsmanship.

During the two-year term, each Mentor School will be partnered with one new EL Education school, regularly connecting in person and through other means to share best practices and provide advice on effective implementation of the EL Education model. Through site visits, leadership coaching, teacher collaboration and the ongoing sharing of resources, the schools in this initiative benefit from sustained interaction and a mutual commitment to EL Education’s vision for student achievement.

“We know that students are more likely to improve their academic performance when given the chance to analyze and critique models of exemplary work. This is just as true for teachers and leaders at the school level. Therefore, our Mentor Schools provide important support and guidance for our newest partner schools as these schools seek to attain similar levels of transformative results,” said Mark Conrad, EL Education Chief Schools Officer.

Sierra Expeditionary Learning School and Arbor Vitae-Woodruff Elementary School join 12 other Mentor Schools within the EL Education network::

About Arbor Vitae-Woodruff Elementary School 

Arbor Vitae - Woodruff Elementary School (AV-W), located in Arbor Vitae, WI, provides a rich, active, and fundamental educational program for students in grades pre-kindergarten through eighth grade. Exemplary student work and performance are primary goals at AV-W. We believe that all children can and want to learn and we prepare our students to become knowing inquirers and participants in their own learning. We set high expectations for student achievement and provide necessary support to enable each and every student to achieve these expectations.

About Sierra Expeditionary Learning School 

Sierra Expeditionary Learning School (SELS) is a K-8 public charter within the Tahoe Truckee Unified School District. SELS inspires a diverse group of learners to achieve academic excellence and develop a strong sense of character and community. Curriculum is implemented through project-based expeditions and fieldwork that challenge students to think critically while also fostering their natural curiosity and love of learning.