Monday, February 18, 2013

Happy Presidents' Day and a bit of news re MNPS Virtual School

MNPS Virtual SchoolThings move apace here at MNPS Virtual School. Though it's a holiday for students and a Professional Day for teachers, our whole team (5 dynamic individuals) are each and every one of us in to work today, working working working. We are providing a valuable service to district students over this upcoming Spring "Intersession" the first week of the district's first two-week long Spring Break and Spring Break itself), providing "Bridge Math Intensive," our first real foray into the world of Blended Learning. Students, for a nominal registration fee, will complete in two weeks a course normally running a full 18 week semester. It will be online, but every morning of the 9 days the students attend our physical School, they will work mornings with two stellar online (and classroom) math teachers, then after lunch they will attend intense Math Lab and continue working in small groups with yet another wonderful teacher.

Bridge Math Intensive--and the intensive effort it will require on the part of teachers, administration, and students--will be of particular help to Seniors who may only lack that 5th math in order to graduate on time.

This is what continually amazes me about the teachers with whom we work. Sure, it's an opportunity for them to pick up a little extra money over their Break, but believe me, they are not doing it for the money. They care. They care deeply. In addition to customized registration procedures for BMI (no, not the songwriter's licensing agency--Bridge Math Intensive), we're working this week to open registration for our Summer Success Program, an 8 week fee-based (and no, funding does not happen for summer school locally or, to my knowledge, anywhere in the state) during which students will complete a half-credit course (often one semester of a year long class) for credit. This will require its own set of procedures and mechanisms for registration and delivery. Finally, we're working on new mechanisms and procedures for registration for school year 2013-14. I posted on Facebook last week a status that may have sounded a bit smug or facetious, but I meant every word of it. To quote:
Scott Merrick -- February 13 in Nashville
I'm so glad to be in a workplace where all team members are recognized for their contributions and talents and where continuous improvement is more than a buzz phrase--it's an ever-present challenge and imperative. Thanks MNPS Virtual School and Metro Nashville Public Schools.
Be sure to tune in to Newschannel5+ (Comcast channel 250 locally) Wednesday night at 7PM until 8 to watch our esteemed Principal, Dr. James Witty, and our similarly esteemed District Superintendent of Schools Dr. Jesse Register answer community questions about Virtual School and the way we're doing it here in Nashville Public Schools: We believe we're constantly improving the right way to do it.

 Back to work, y'all. No rest for the innovative. Happy Presidents' Day!

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