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WASC

 

 

 

 

VALLEJO CHARTER SCHOOL

MID-CYCLE PROGRESS REPORT

2833 Tennessee Street

Vallejo, California 94591

 

Vallejo City Unified School District

 

May 28, 2015

 

Accrediting Commission for Schools Western Association of Schools and Colleges

 

            CONTENTS

 

  1. Introduction and Basic Student /Community Profile Data ………………………………… 3
  2. Significant School Changes and Developments ……………………………………………14
  3. Follow-up and Progress Report Development Process ……………………………………18
  4. Progress and the Critical Areas for Follow-up within the Action Plan ……………………20
  5. School wide Action Plan ………………………………………………………………………25
  6. Appendix
  1. Memorandum of Understanding
  2. Local Control Accountability Plan

 

 

 

 

 

I: Introduction and Basic Student/Community Profile Data

Description of the school

Vallejo Charter School was founded in 2007 as a K-8 dependent charter governed by the VCUSD governing board. Many factors work together to give VCS its unique appeal. As a K-8 school we institute two distinct instructional delivery models; at the primary and elementary level our classrooms are self contained while at the middle school level 6-8 students receive instruction from two teachers one specializing in math/science and the other in English Language Arts and Social Studies. We also have a robust Arts Specialist program which offers to each of our K-5 students one hour of art and dance or choir a week while our middle school students  have choices of specialist classes; art, dance, choir, graphic design, or photography.

From the beginning VCS has partnered with Expeditionary Learning. EL is a nationally recognized educational model that partners with schools to build teacher capacity in service of a more ambitious vision of student achievement and joins academic challenge and scholarship to critical skills like perseverance, critical thinking, and an ethic of contribution to prepare students for success in college, career and citizenship. According to our Charter and MOU with our district, VCS implements the District adopted math curriculum but addresses the English Language Arts, Science, and Social Studies curriculum through the Expeditionary Learning model of expeditions that are built on guiding questions, case studies, and culminating projects. (See appendix 1)

School wide student goals

Mission:

Vallejo Charter School celebrates a diverse learning community, by inspiring excellence and engagement in education and the arts, encouraging the natural curiosity and critical thinking of all students, and challenging them to create transformative footprints in our world.

 

Vision

At Vallejo Charter School (VCS), we think, believe, explore, and dare in order to inspire bold thinkers who believe in their own ability to succeed and to share their gifts with the world. We encourage students to find and speak their truth, and honor that by meeting learners where they are, each day. Students are challenged to produce high-quality work through a culture of revision and perseverance, collaboration with their peers, and in long-term explorations called learning expeditions. Technology and the arts are also integral to student learning, and working artists foster students’ academic and artistic development by empowering students to find their authentic voice. This comprehensive approach to education results in students thinking critically, achieving high test scores, and developing the confidence, self-awareness, and responsible leadership needed for success and fulfillment in their academic, personal, and professional lives.

 

 

 

Current student enrollment of Vallejo Charter School

 

 

 

Enrollment at VCS differs from the district. Vallejo Charter School’s White population is 3 times higher than the district and the African American, Hispanic, and Filipino populations are 4, 10, and 5 percentage points lower than the district.

 

Vallejo Charter School enrollment is determined by lottery. Enrollment is open from January through mid April. Families are issued a number and on May 1st numbers are drawn at VCUSD offices. Priorities are given as follows:

  • Children of current staff
  • Siblings of current students
  • Current VCUSD residents
  • Residents outside of VCUSD

 

 

 

 

Current Faculty/Staff demographics

 

VCS number of Certificated Staff

Certificated 24

(includes one manager)

 

% HQT

99.2%

 

Advanced Degrees

Masters

5

Staff by Gender

Male 4

Female 20

Faculty by Ethnicity

African American

4

 

Asian

1

 

Filipino

1

 

Hispanic or Latino

0

 

White

17

 

Other

1

 

 

Vallejo Charter School currently has 22 classroom teachers; two at each grade level K-8 with two additional teachers at the 6th grade level, one Support Teacher K-8, and one PE teacher 6-8. Our credentialed staff also includes one administrator, one teacher leader, two part time resource teachers (.7 FTE), one Speech teacher and Occupational Therapist both part time (.2 FTE). We have a nurse and a school psychologist (.2 FTE each). (Only full time credentialed positions are reported in the chart)

 

 

 

 

Classified Staff Demographics

 

VCS number of Classified Staff

Classified 14

 

 

Staff by Gender

Male 4

Female 10

Faculty by Ethnicity

African American

5

 

Asian

0

 

Filipino

0

 

Hispanic or Latino

2

 

White

6

 

Other

1

 

 

Our Certificated Staff includes one Office Manager, one full time and one part time office clerk and one part time library clerk. We have one Academic Support Provider, four custodial staff, three full time and one part time. We also have one student nutrition specialist and four noon duty supervisors.

VCS also contracts with 7 Specialists for the Arts program; two art and two dance specialists one devoted to the lower grades while the other works with the upper grades, one photography, one graphic design, and one choirs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Disaggregated and interpreted student achievement data

Based on the 2012 and 2013 CST data in English Language Arts, Vallejo Charter School’s 3rd and 5th grade show overall improvement in percent of students proficient.  The 3rd grade shows an eleven percentage point increase and the 5th shows a 6 percentage point increase. For the 3rd grade our African American students show a 27 percentage point increase and the Hispanic student s an 18 percentage point increase. In both grades the percent of white students performing proficient decreased. This would indicate a narrowing of the achievement gap in those grade levels.

Our 2nd and 4th grades maintain a high percentage of white students scoring proficient on the standardized testing and are at or near 60% overall proficiency but are struggling with the African American and Hispanic population.

 

 

 

As with the ELA results, the math testing for 3rd grade show a similar trend with the overall percent of students scoring proficient increasing by 19 percentage points, the African American students increasing by 50 percentage points and the Hispanic students by 24 percentage points. The percent of white students scoring proficient remained stationary. However, in math it is the 4th grade which had similar results with an overall increase of 6 percentage points and a leap of 30 percentage points among the Hispanic students.

The scores of our 2nd grade students fell across the band but the 26 percentage point drop by African American students is particularly worrying. Our 5th grade had similarly disappointing results across the band with drops of 30 and 35 percentage points among Hispanic and white students respectfully.

 

Our middle school has seen the greatest amount of change over the last 3 years. In English Language Arts our most consistent grade level was 7th grade maintaining and overall percent proficient of 45 with a slight increase in the African American student data of 6 percentage points. The percent proficient decreased across the bands in the other two grade levels.

 

 

 

In math the results are similar to ELA. Seventh grade had a small drop overall of 3 percentage points but the African American students increased by 10 percentage points. The 8th grade showed an overall increase in algebra scores up 8 percentage points overall. Sixth grade score dropped significantly.

 

 

 

 

Vallejo Charter School 2013-2014 Quarter 3 Mock Star

 

 

 

 

Grade

 

2013 prof.

2014 Target

Quarter 3

Percentage point change

Math 2

60%

65%

57%

-3

3

76%

81%

59%

-17

4

71%

76%

35%

-36

5

40%

45%

47%

+7

6

46%

51%

51%

+5

7

42%

47%

16%

-26

Algebra

31%

36%

53%

+22

ELA 2

58%

63%

61%

+3

3

60%

65%

52%

-8

4

66%

71%

65%

-1

5

55%

60%

62%

+7

6

44%

49%

68%

+24

7

45%

50%

40%

-5

8

30%

35%

50%

+20

 

 

 

In May of 2014 the STAR was no longer given. As a result VCS has only District Wide Assessment data for that year. Our DWA data especially in third quarter was designed to simulate the results if the CST had been given. As indicated above our scores in the three DWA’s are compared with the 2013 CST proficiency scores. In math grades 5, 6, 8 the number of students scoring proficient increased from the 2013 CST scores. In ELA the same occurred in grades 5, 6 and 8. In Math grades, 2, 3, 4, and 7 did not meet the proficiency level from 2013. In ELA grades 3, 4, and 7 did not meet the 2013 proficiency level.

 

The District Wide Assessment figures when viewed by ethnicity show some interesting data points. On the third DWA Grade 6 math has 20 African American students and 16 White students who took the test and of those 55% of the African American students and 56% of the white students scored proficient.

In 8th grade the numbers were smaller with 16 African American students and 14 white but with the same results 50% of the African American students were proficient while only 43% of the white students.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

California English Language Development Test (CELDT)

#/% of Students at the Following Levels of Performance

ENGLISH LEARNERS by CELDT

2011-2012

2012-2013

2013-2014

Number

Percent

Number

Percent

Number

Percent

Total EL Students Tested

29

100

23

100

30

100

Advanced

1

3

0

0

0

0

Early Advanced

11

38

6

26

4

13

Intermediate

11

38

12

52

18

60

Early Intermediate

6

21

4

17

6

20

Beginner

0

0

1

4

2

7

 

 

 

Vallejo Charter School does a good job of supporting our EL students. Our data shows that students entering in the early grades usually increase their level by at least one yearly and are Early Advanced or Advanced by the time they are in middle school. We do have a few exceptions and they are referred to our Student Study Team for additional interventions.

Of the 20 students who have had more than one year of EL services: 7 or 35% increased their level by at least one, 9(45%) retained the same score and 4 (20%) were RFEP’d out of the program and are on monitor status.
 

 

 

 

SCHOOL CLIMATE DATA AND ANALYSIS

 

Referrals

Suspensions

Expulsions

 

11-12

12-13

13-14

11-12

12-13

13-14

11-12

12-13

13-14

Total

64

200

105

36

24

18

0

0

0

American Indian or Alaskan Native

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Asian

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Pacific Islander

0

0

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

Filipino

2

6

5

2

0

1

0

0

0

Hispanic or Latino

8

12

17

5

1

4

0

0

0

African American not Hispanic

42

156

48

22

19

11

0

0

0

White

4

26

34

3

4

2

0

0

0

SWD

4

0

0

2

0

0

0

0

0

 

Our School Climate data indicates a reduction in both referrals and suspensions in the last two years. We reduced referrals by 48% and suspensions by 25%. We continue to have a disproportionate number of African American students in both categories; referrals and suspensions.

 

 

 

 

 

II: Significant School Changes and Developments

 

Vallejo Charter School has seen many changes since the last WASC visitation. We maintained the model presented three years ago and the school has continually worked to improve its educational programs. We have seen notable changes in location, funding, staffing, curriculum and assessment, and programs. With developments and improvements in these key areas, the staff at VCS has worked diligently to refine its practices, in conjunction with the goals outlined in the school’s WASC self-study document. We have utilized all members of our community, teachers, staff, parents, and students to analysis our needs and develop actions to improve achievement, culture, and parent involvement. Our Charter Council, Parent Teacher Organization, Instructional Leadership Team, and most recently our Youth Leadership Team are a part of our continuing effort to make VCS an exemplar school. 

 

Location:

 

In June of 2014, VCS was relocated from the former John Davidson Elementary School Campus on Del Sur Street to a larger facility. We now occupy the former Springstowne Middle School site on Tennessee Street. The new location has improved our program as we now have designated classrooms for our arts program, a library, a gym, two computer labs, and plenty of office space. Our new location has required attention to creating new routines and structures for the use of and movement around campus many of which are still being developed or refined.

 

Funding:

 

The State’s implementation of the Local Control Funding Formula requires VCS to operate with a Local Control Accountability Plan. This new formula has allowed us to make a stronger commitment to our Arts program, increasing our offerings to include; Art, dance, choir, photography, and graphic design. At the time of our last WASC visit our arts program was funded primarily from donations. At one point the program was in danger of being discontinued due to lack of funds. We received additional funding from the District to continue the program. We have also added three support positions; Academic Support Provider, who oversees our Full Service Community Schools program, a part time library clerk, and a full time Support Teacher who assists with the delivery of curriculum to our ELL students as well as teaching small groups at different grade levels. Each of these additions has had significant effects on instructional support and student achievement, it has provided for our families and students specific resources not previously available.

 

 

 

Staffing:

 

In June of 2012 Rhonda Coyle was introduced as the new principal of Vallejo Charter School. Ms. Coyle brought with her ten years working at the middle school level as a teacher and administrator.  Our teaching and support staff are identified below with years at VCS identified.

 

 

Staff Name

Position

Years at VCS

Rhonda Coyle

Principal

3

Glenn Lustig

Teacher Leader

6

Evangeline Espiritu

Teacher Kindergarten

6

Nasrin Salak

Teacher Kindergarten

2

Mary Carhidi-Wise

Teacher 1st grade

7

Tiffani Reed

Teacher 1st grade

8

Elizabeth Lewis

Teacher 2nd

1

Diane Klinge

Teacher 2nd

3

Nicole Bandy

Teacher 3rd

8

Marina Hammon-Adams

Teacher 3rd

1

Dan Seltzer

Teacher 4th

2

Jennifer O’Brien

Teacher 4th

6

Laura Moreira

Teacher 5th

3

Gina Irvine

Teacher 5th

7

Karen Soltesz

Teacher 6th math/science

6

Charla Yakabe

Teacher 6th ELA/social studies

5

Alex Geiber

Teacher 6th math/science

1

Cynthia Holbert

Teacher 6th ELA/social studies

1

Heather Huff

Teacher 7th math/science

1

Treva Nervis

Teacher 7th ELA/social studies

1

Regina Mainero

Teacher 8th math/science

1

David Gutfeld

Teacher 8th ELA/social studies

3

Joseph Atkins-Dunbar

Teacher PE (middle school)

2

Alyssa Voss

Teacher, K-8 support

1

Patricia Whitman

Office Manager

8

Dawn Zoerb

Office Clerk (full time)

6

Jacquline Calderon

Office Clerk (part time)

1

Vernyta Moore

Academic Support Provider

1

Maggie Maldonado

Library Clerk (part time)

1

Amanda Miller

Student Nutrition Services

5

Curtis Craig

Head Custodian

6

Gurdev Singh

Custodian

6

Branden Green-Bennett

Custodian

1

Kevin Traveler

Custodian (part time)

1

Erin Lindke

Noon Duty

5

Erika Lindsay

Noon Duty

5

Jerri Chapman

Noon Duty

2

Shannon O’Brion

Noon Duty

6

 

 

In response to the large number of families with children on our 6th grade wait list for the 2014-2015 school year we increased our sixth grade from two classes to four. This allowed VCS to fill two additional staff positions and reduce the class size in 6th grade to 27.

 

Curriculum and Assessment:

 

In 2012 VCS promoted its first two full classes of 8th grade. Prior to 2012 we only had one 8th grade class. For the 2013-2014 school year a full time PE teacher was added to our staff to offer our middle school a more traditional PE curriculum. Our students now participate in standards based PE taught by a credentialed physical education teacher and experience a more traditional middle school practice.

 

The most dramatic shift in education has been the adoption of Common Core standards that demand more critical thinking and expository reading/writing skills in all subject areas.  Over the last two years VCS has focused their EL work plan goals on the ELA and math shifts associated with the common core in an effort to support teachers in developing lessons and strategies that address these new standards. Our teachers have had significant professional development in areas of citing evidence, allowing students to grapple with text as well as math tasks, and the concept of numeracy across disciplines. Additionally this year we implemented a newly adopted math curriculum. This work is expected to foster greater student achievement and prepare our students for college and career in the 21st century.

 

Programs:

 

Full Service Community School:

 

In August of 2014 Vallejo Charter School became a Full Service Community School. We added the position of Academic Support Provider and began partnering with local agencies and organizations. This program offers wrap around services for our student s and families. Through our partnership with “A Better Way” we have an onsite clinician to work with our students in emotional need. This program also reaches out to our parents and families to better connect them with the school, offering trainings in such things as our new on-line math curriculum, our on-line parent portal, and putting them in touch with organizations such as “Spark Point”.

 

Positive School Culture:

 

Since 2012 Vallejo Charter School has aggressively worked to improve our culture and climate. Using the District trainings on Positive Behavior Intervention Systems we created common area expectations and implemented a positive intervention system. Most recently we have added Restorative Justice practices. These practices meld well with our Expeditionary Learning/Responsive Classroom strategies to build community at VCS.

 

Expeditionary Learning:

 

Vallejo Charter School was founded as an Expeditionary Learning School. Over the last few years the organization, Expeditionary Learning, has evolved and has now implemented a “Credentialing” program. EL’s definition of school success takes into account three different aspects of achievement and has based its school credentialing process on these factors:

 

  • Student Mastery of Knowledge and Skills. This factor takes into account how schools raised performance on state assessments/testing over a period of 4-6 years.
  • Student Character. EL schools establish consistent school-wide “Habits of Scholarship” (such as perseverance and responsibility), which are then tracked by students and teachers to provide evidence of growth over time.
  • High-Quality Student Work. Schools present evidence showing how the quality, depth, and authenticity of student work has improved during the school’s multiyear partnership with EL.

 

Vallejo Charter is actively seeking EL Credentialing. This effort is evident in our work plan and our professional development. This year we structured our work plan so as to address the three areas identified by EL for Credentialing and our PD such that each session was followed by a grade level and grade cluster (k-2, 3-5, 6-8) protocol that deepened our understanding of the work.  

 

 

 

III. Follow-up and Progress Report Development Process

Vallejo Charter School begins assessing progress at the end of each school year. Our Charter Council, ELAC, staff and parent groups review data and our LCAP.

Our Instructional Leadership Team (ILT) review our EL core practices; Curriculum, Instruction, Assessment, Culture, and Leadership. These core practices are reflected in our LCAP actions and support our work for the three critical areas of focus identified in our WASC report. In addition VCS conducts a midyear survey in which teachers are asked to reflect on how well they personally and we as a school are prepared to implement our EL model in the five areas. This data reveled that our staff exhibit positive professional culture and the school community exhibits a sense of urgency toward student achievement and believe that all students are capable of achievement. The findings of this survey are addressed by our Instructional Leadership Team and will be considered as we evaluate our LCAP for next school year.

On March 4th, during a regular Staff meeting the principal reported on the WASC and shared the basic process. We reviewed the three critical areas of focus and the format of the upcoming visit.

On March 12th during a regular session of the Vallejo Charter School Charter Council, the principal reported on the WASC. At that time the Council reviewed 2014 District Wide Assessment data and identified areas of significant changes and developments at VCS that impacted our school or programs. Those suggestions are included in this report.

On March 25th during a regularly scheduled Instructional Leadership Team meeting, the principal reported on the WASC. At that time the team reviewed the three Critical Areas of Focus,

  1. The achievement gap between white students and African American students in the California Standardized Test in ELA

 

  1. Improvement of ELA scores for English Language Learners

 

  1. Improve the overall climate and culture of VCS

 

We identified actions that showed progress toward these Critical Areas and ones that still needed work. The recommendations were considered in the writing of this report.

On Monday, April 13th during a regular session of the Vallejo Charter School Youth Leadership Team, the principal solicited response from the membership on how they see progress at Vallejo Charter School. When applicable their responses were included in this report.

On Tuesday, April 14th during a regular session of the Vallejo Charter School Charter Council, the principal reported on the integration of the WASC and LCAP documents as we start to consider how our LCAP can best serve us next year.

On Wednesday, April 22nd the Vallejo Charter School English Language Advisory Committee received information on the LCAP and WASC.

The first draft of the report was sent to Cheri Summers on April 10th. We agreed on a final draft on April 26th. The report was then presented to the superintendent for her review. The VCUSD Governing Board will be apprised of the final report once the WASC committee completes and submits the documents to VCUSD.

 

 

 

IV: Progress on the Critical Areas for Follow-up within the Action Plan

 

In the three years since Vallejo Charter School’s WASC visitation, the school has continued to implement a wide variety of programs to meet the needs of all students on campus. The Leadership teams have addressed the three Areas of Focus in our SPSA and now in our LCAP as well as our Expeditionary Learning Work Plan.

Three Critical Areas:

  1. The achievement gap between white students and African American students in the California Standardized Test in ELA;

As noted in VCS’s LCAP (Appendix 3) three goals support this Critical Area;

  • Goal 1, all students performing at grade level
  • Goal 7 Provide high quality research based Professional Development To teachers and staff
  • Goal 8 Achievement gap eliminated

 

The Visiting committee report from 2012 identified five strategies that would be implemented to address this focus area:

 

 

  1. Professional development (page 27 of the LCAP) – Over the last three years Vallejo Charter School has participated in two levels of Professional Development. At the district level, in addition to PD on the common core shift, our teachers and staff have received intensive PD in areas of culturally relevant teaching, unconscious bias, restorative practices, and Positive Intervention Behavior Strategies. Some of this training was direct to teachers while other trainings were given to a select few who then brought the information back and conducted on site trainings. Similarly, at the site level, our Expeditionary Learning Work Plan goals identify specific academic and cultural areas for professional growth. As with the district focus our EL PD centers on common core shifts and building community within our school. Within the classroom these translate into deeper and more engaging discussions during school wide morning Crew where students build trust with each other and their teachers.  As a result of the academic common core trainings our classrooms display a higher level of engagement and are more student centered with increased student talk and decreased teacher talk. Although our teachers can determine within their own classroom on formative and summative tests how they are progressing with this goal it will be a few years before we can make a valid determination of our progress as a school. However, the data as displayed in this report show some encouraging areas of progress.

 

  1. Assessment (page 28 of the LCAP) – VCS teachers track student data and use formative and summative data with their students to set goals and reflect on progress. VCS started using teacher action plans three years ago in response to the Districts initiative on data tracking. For grades 2-8 these plans tracked students’ progress each trimester on District Wide Assessments using the previous year’s CST score as a baseline. Teachers identified strategies and best practices for each achievement level. These plans were very useful in tracking the progress of all of our students and particularly our students of color and in identifying strategies to differentiate instruction. And most importantly through the cycle of inquiry determining if the actions implemented had the desired effect. This year the teacher action plans are more informal due to the lack of state assessment. Once we have the baseline data from our first SBAC test we will be implementing trimester action plan review.

VCS Students also reflect on and report out their progress each trimester. Our Expeditionary Learning model includes as a component of one of the Core Practices, Student Led Conferences. To prepare for these, teachers coach students on selecting pieces of work which represent their successes and their challenges. Students are taught to analyze their progress and report it to family members. This year several teachers are adding a dimension to the Student Led Conference. Students are now self-assessing on Habits of Scholarship; responsibility, effort, and collaboration. Expeditionary Learning has since their inception had performance character as a key component of their model but with their new credentialing program, Habits of Scholarship have become a primary focus. These HOS are being addressed school wide in learning targets and next year will be a school wide component of SLC.

 

  1. Enrolling students in before and after school interventions (Page 45 of the LCAP) –. For reading intervention Vallejo Charter School has focused on the K-2 grade levels. We have targeted these grades as pivotal years in reading development and our scores indicate that students who have progressed through these programs successfully go on to perform better in higher grades. We currently offer a before school Reading intervention program (SIPPs) for our 1st grade struggling readers. And an after school program for our Kindergarteners. We also offer 2nd grade leveled reading groups by including our Support Teacher. Each of the 2nd grade teachers teach a reading level of 2nd graders (on level or below level) while the support teacher takes the above level group and offers a challenge curriculum. In math we currently have an 8th grade after school intervention program. In prior years we have had an after school math intervention in both 5th and 6th grade again pivotal years in math development. The ability to offer these extension classes is dependent on having teachers willing to work extra hours. This year we could not find personnel or the organizations to hold additional before and after school classes except as noted. In coming years we will continue to explore avenues that will offer our students opportunities for extended learning.

 

  1. Teacher collaboration (Page 30 in the LCAP) - Although the amount of time for collaboration during the duty day has decreased this year, VCS has worked diligently to effectively utilize this time for staff collaboration. The early release on Wednesday serves as a key component, providing staff members with roughly three hours of collaboration time per month, spread out over two Wednesdays with the other two reserved for EL PD and staff meeting both of which often incorporate some additional collaboration time.

To supplement this vital element, we use extra service agreements and substitute time to offer teachers time with our Teacher Leader or EL School Designer to address specific instructional needs, to work together to plan expeditions, and or observe best practices.

 

  1. Recognition of student progress in ELA – (Page 39 in the LCAP) - Expeditionary Learning has a design Principle which states “Students are encouraged to compete, not against each other, but with their own personal best and with rigorous standards of excellence”. At Vallejo Charter School this is one of our core beliefs. While we had CST and DWA data we awarded certificates to students who had made progress in their ELA and math scores not who scored the highest. This celebration and awarding of certificates occurred at our monthly School Wide Crew meetings. This year we are eagerly awaiting the interim assessment data from our recent California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress in ELA and math. That data has just started to be released.

 

  1. Improvement of ELA scores for English Language Learners

As noted in VCS’s LCAP (Appendix 2) three goals support this Critical Area;

  • Goal 1, all students performing at grade level
  • Goal 7 Provide high quality research based Professional Development To teachers and staff
  • Goal 8 Achievement gap eliminated

 

The Visiting committee report from 2012 identified five strategies that would be implemented to address this focus area:

 

 

  1. Professional development (Page 28 and 44 in the LCAP) – Vallejo Charter School supports our ELL students through a focused pill out program. Our program began with a part time position and has grown to full time support teacher. This growth has been the direct result of the new funding formula and the districts willingness to allow VCS the flexibility to use our funding to best meet our needs. VCS has a very small but vital population of ELL students and it is our mission to help them progress to reclassification as soon as possible. To that end our Support teacher attends all district and Expeditionary Learning PDs that address the ELL population and the curriculum. She works collaboratively with all K-8 teachers to both support ELL students and to make sure they are supported in their general education classroom. In addition over the years many of our teachers have received professional development in Guided Language Acquisition Design (GLAD) strategies. And in turn they have offered on site PD in various strategies such as cognitive dictionary and grammar word walls. This work has directly affected our ELL population and attests to the numbers of students reclassified.

 

  1. Assessment (Page 28 in the LCAP) -  As stated in the first Critical Focus Area, our teachers maintain Action Plans which track student progress from the beginning of the school year. Our base line has always been our CST or DWA score from the previous year to which new data is added each trimester. For our ELL population, our Teacher Leader tracks the assessment data from the California English Language Development Test (CELDT) and reviews it with teachers, students, and families. Teachers, including the Support Teacher, track student progress on their Action Plans and identify strategies to support each student. Our data shows that the number of entering Kindergarten ELL students is comparable to the number of RFEPs and we stay fairly consistent in our number of ELL students served (approximately 30) though we have a significant second language population, primarily Hispanic.

 

 

  1. Enrolling students in before and after school interventions – Our ELL students are included in the before and after school interventions described in Critical Area 1

 

  1. Teacher collaboration – As described in Critical Area 1

 

 

  1. Recognition of student progress in ELA – English Language Learner students are included in the recognition of student progress related in Critical Area 1.

 

  1. Improve the overall climate and culture of VCS

As noted in VCS’s LCAP (Appendix 2) three goals support this Critical Area;

  • Goal 4 Safe and Supportive School Environment for all students
  • Goal 5 Involved and supportive parents and community partners
  • Goal 10  Reduce referrals, suspensions, and expulsions

 

The Visiting committee report from 2012 identified three strategies that would be implemented to address this focus area:

 

  1. Utilizing the teacher referral and suspension rates (Page 27 in the LCAP) – Over the last three years VCUSD has been addressing the referral and suspension rates district wide. Principals have been given extensive professional development in Positive Behavior Interventions, Restorative Justice and most recently in Trauma Informed Care. Our referral form and tracking system has been redesigned and the program of Full Service Community implemented across the district. We have been tracking our referrals and suspension at VCS for the last three years. We are primarily interested in where most of our referrals and suspensions happen (for example on the play ground), when they happen (before school or during school), and by whom (predominately middle school students or perhaps a few students (7) accounting for 12 referrals). With this data we have been able to reduce our referral and suspension rate considerable and identify students in need of further resources and interventions, Working with our Academic Support Provider we have also identified students who are in need of social emotional support and have been able to refer them to the Student Study Team (SST) and in some cases on to additional services in house and out. Many of our students who display repetitive behavior issues have been the focus of our Restorative Justice Circles.

 

  1. Developing positive intervention measures (Page 32 in the LCAP) - Through the district our teachers and staff have had extensive professional development with Jeffery Sprague on Positive Behavior Intervention Systems. Vallejo Charter School teachers and noon duty staff worked together to develop common area expectations which are posted around campus. This work along with our interactive modeling for use of playground equipment has aided us in reducing discipline issues. Last year we implement a school wide positive incentive program. This program recognizes students for positive behavior in the areas of being kind, being respectful, and being safe. Any VCS staff member can give a ticket to a student. All recipients are recognized at each of our School Wide Crew meetings. A “Recognition Board” is updated monthly in the hallway and students receive a book for their recognition. We are currently working with our Youth Leadership Team to develop a more “middle school” friendly version in an effort to increase participation among our older students.

 

 

  1. ACLU and Anti-Bullying training for all staff, parents and staff (Page 34 in the LCAP) – The required ACLU training for VCUSD personnel ended in 2013. Vallejo Charter School attended all ACLU required trainings and our students received the proper training using the agreed upon programs. VCS supports Anti-bullying training for all staff and parents through our Full Service Community Schools program. Currently we partner with “A Better Way” whose clinician conducts school wide PD on anti-bullying and trauma induced care at staff meetings and works in the classroom to bring those trainings to the students. We have not yet held any parent meetings where Anti-Bullying training has been presented. Our third and sixth grades did some in depth work around bullying this school year. Both consisted of collecting classroom data, analyzing it, and presenting it in various forms. The third grade work was presented at a School Wide Crew meeting and our 6th grade work can be seen on the ramp landing.

 

 

 

 

V. School Wide Action Plan

In 2014 the State enacted the new Local Control Funding Formula. At that time VCUSD was creating their own Local Control Accountability Plan and informed Vallejo Charter School that they too would need to create an LCAP. This was an entirely new process for both the district and VCS. We worked with district staff to understand the process and used the District Template. We had latitude to customize the plan to meet the needs of VCS integrating our WASC and Expeditionary Learning focus areas.

Refinements in our plan include a budgetary commitment to our Arts program which up until 2013-2014 was funded through grants, centralized District funds, and fundraising. This move has stabilized our arts program allowing VCS to offer additional specialist classes to our middle school students and to create more opportunities to integrate our arts with expeditions at each grade level. We have also committed to the Full Service Community Schools initiative which is supported in the plan with various actions such as implementation of Restorative Justice, Trauma informed care, and wrap around services for our students and families. As a Full Service Community School all of our students have additional academic and social/emotional support. We have also made a commitment to our new teachers. Over the last three years we have experienced teacher turn over. To address this new concern we have included BTSA support and specific Professional Development outlined to support the needs of our new teachers.

Currently VCS has two distinct plans that are utilized to move the school forward, the LCAP and the EL work plan. Our Work plan is developed by the Instructional Leadership Team (ILT) prior to the start of the year. It consists of three goals; one academic, one culture, and one on high quality work. It identifies specific faculty learning targets and outcomes. This work plan is created from the IR results from the previous year. The implementation and monitoring of this plan is the responsibility of the ILT and the EL School Designer. The ILT consists of the principal, teacher leader, Arts Coordinator, Academic Support Provider, and one teacher from each of the three networks (K-2, 3-5, and 6-8). The team meets monthly.

 

The primary responsibility for implementing and monitoring the school wide plan rests with the principal. At the beginning of the year various schedules are created; a professional development calendar, collaboration days and times, offsite institutes and workshops identified and teachers selected to attend. Each schedule and action is monitored, evaluated, and adjusted as needed throughout the year. Monthly principal reports are given to the Charter Council. The two plans are integrated in that our LCAP goals and actions reflect our EL core practices and moving forward we will incorporate the specifics of our EL credentialing needs.

           

 

 

 

 

WASC Self Study 2012

WASC Mid Cycle Accreditation 2015