Turning Points is a comprehensive education reform model that focuses on improving student learning and is the driving force behind the Spartacus Academy.
Recognizing the need to both strengthen the academic core of middle schools and establish caring, supportive environments that value all young adolescents, Turning Points helps middle schools undergo dramatic change.
By working with Turning Points, middle school teachers are coached in tested, effective instructional methods geared specifically for the middle-level learner. Students and teachers are organized in new ways. Students are engaged in planning and managing their own learning. The school schedule may be redesigned. Professional development operates differently. New partnerships between the school and the community are created. Schools participate in a local, regional and national network of schools which helps them develop all facets of their schools. All of these efforts are focused squarely on improving learning, teaching, and assessment.
Our Guiding Post at MCC Middle School
As the 'Encore' Staff at Mason County Central Middle School set forth in creating The Academy, the Turning Points reform model will be the guiding post as we reinvent ourselves as a 21st century middle school. It is a PROVEN model in educational reform for the middle school experience.
In 1989, The Carnegie Corporation of New York issued "Turning Points: Preparing American Youth for the 21st Century," a landmark report which recognized the need to strengthen the academic core of middle schools and establish caring, supportive environments which value adolescents. The findings of the Turning Points report, along with ten years of research and practice data from middle schools around the country, led to the creation of the National Turning Points Network.
In 1998, Carnegie turned to the Center for Collaborative Education in Boston (CCE) to develop a new whole school reform design that would be based on the research and work of the preceding nine years. CCE launched the National Turning Points Network in August of 1999, and in January 2000, Turning Points became a member of New American Schools and their portfolio of comprehensive school reform design teams. Also in 2000, Carnegie Corporation issued an in-depth update of the 1989 report - Turning Points 2000: Educating Adolescents in the 21st Century, by Anthony Jackson and Gayle Davis.
Since 1988, Turning Points has grown into a thriving national network of regional centers serving more than 80 schools in Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Vermont, and Wisconsin.
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