What does "Ready Schools" mean?
How does a school become involved in Ready Schools?
Is this just another form of corrective action for low performing schools?
What is expected or required for participation in Ready Schools?
Will my school need to generate another “plan” for Ready Schools?
What types of support can we expect to receive in this initiative?
Who can enroll in the job-embedded graduate program?
Is Ready Schools only for pre-k to third grade?
How do second language learners and children with disabilities fit into the Ready School model?
Ready Schools looks like another task for my school to do. Is that correct?
Is there a special curriculum that is used in Ready Schools?
↑ top What does "Ready Schools" mean?At its heart, the Ready Schools movement is about ensuring that children come to school healthy and well-prepared – “Ready to Learn” – and that schools are in turn “Ready” and responsive to the needs of those children when they arrive. This is about refining
- the ways in which all educators work together to support student learning;
- the ways in which a community supports the healthy development of children (physical and mental health, dental needs, social supports, etc..);
- the ways in which educational partners (universities, schools, districts) work together to align practices, leverage resources and support, and provide assistance;
- the ways in which teachers and early care providers learn and grow professionally to ensure high quality teaching, learning, and leadership; and
- the ways in which early learning centers and schools strive for high quality.
↑ top How does a school become involved in Ready Schools?
Eventually all elementary schools and all early learning centers in Miami-Dade will be involved in the initiative. Early Learning Centers are becoming involved as the Quality Counts! Program is rolled out in the county. As the program grows each year, schools will be selected that are willing to work on the Ready Schools elements described in the graphic of the model. Every effort is made to select schools in each region and voting district in the county to ensure equal access to the program.
↑ top Is this just another form of corrective action for low performing schools?
This is not a corrective action plan for challenged schools, nor is it a reward program for high performing schools. Care is taken to ensure that schools are selected with a diversity of demographics, past academic performance, assets/strengths, as well as challenges. As schools become involved, some will be identified that have shown success to become Regional Ready Schools Centers of Excellence to demonstrate best practices and take a lead in growing and scaling up the model.
↑ top What is expected or required for participation in Ready Schools?To participate in Ready Schools, educators in a school or early learning center should be prepared to work on the elements of the model (link to graphic here) in order to help students succeed. Strong administrative leadership to guide and support this initiative is crucial. One way administrators support educator learning is to provide time and set expectations for collaboration within the context of improving teacher practice during the daily work of schools and centers. It is also important that schools agree to send teachers to the summer trainings in order to build internal capacity of schools to guide this work from within.
↑ top What types of support can we expect to receive in this initiative?
As a Ready School, you will have access to many professional development opportunities for your faculty, including content practice clinics, professional learning community coaches training, guided inquiry / action research, and the opportunity to apply for a free graduate degree program (read below). Support is also provided through a professor-in-residence and numerous experienced facilitators to assist in building the capacity of your own faculty to engage in this work. Early learning centers will have the support of coaches as they engage in the Quality Counts program. Principals and APs will also become part of a Principal Professional Learning Community of their own in order to examine ways to put the necessary supports, conditions, cultures, and resources in place in their schools. Center Directors are invited to become part of the Center Directors series.
↑ top Who can enroll in the job-embedded graduate program?
Faculty members in designated Ready Schools who meet the University of Florida’s admissions requirements are eligible for enrollment in the job-embedded graduate program. Faculty members must commit to working in one of the Ready Schools or with one of the early learning centers throughout the duration of the graduate program.
↑ top Is Ready Schools only for pre-k to third grade?
Ready Schools is a comprehensive approach to school improvement, which means that the entire school or center is involved in improving practice to ensure that children are successful. School stakeholders from all grade levels participate in continuous improvement efforts.
↑ top How do second language learners and children with disabilities fit into the Ready School model?
These children have special needs that must be addressed by thoughtful educators. Collaboration with other educators is required to bring specific student needs to the forefront of discussions in order to focus on and address the needs of all children and help them all be successful learners.
↑ top Ready Schools looks like another task for my school to do. Is that correct?
No, that is not correct. Ready Schools is a way to approach making changes in school practices and structures that impede success. It is not an add-on. It is a different way of thinking about how to approach the complexities of teaching and learning. Through the Ready Schools model, we help you think about how to align the numerous district and state initiatives in which you are engaged.
↑ top Is there a special curriculum that is used in Ready Schools?
No, this not another curriculum program for you to implement. Rather, this is about using your curriculum materials and instructional strategies in ways that are developmentally appropriate and effective for children. Using developmentally appropriate practices may require some adjusting to current practices, but it is not a separate curriculum to implement