Instructional Programs ::..
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a3 VIRTUAL ACADEMY
The a3 Virtual Academy is a non-traditional, interactive program of study that relies on technology designed to support teaching and learning in various educational settings. High school students are offered online courses that enable them to work on their own time, at any location and earn high school credits. Blackboard is the software system that frames the electronic courses in an online setting. The Blackboard medium allows teachers and students access to a wide offering of multimedia resources, while incorporating the School System written curriculum. The Virtual Academy allows for anytime, anywhere access, partnered with unlimited collaboration possibilities.
Students interested in the Virtual Academy first meet with their local school administrators and after careful review of eligibility, a student may enroll in the online courses for which they have been approved.
The Accelerated Reader is a reading program designed for students in grades one through twelve. Students make their book choices from a list of fine literature. Students read at their own pace and then take a computerized test featuring five, ten, or twenty multiple-choice comprehension questions.
The test gives immediate feedback in the form of reading points. The program awards points based on length and difficulty of the book and on student comprehension. These points provide incentives and reinforcement to students.
Reading points also provide teachers with a measurement of student performance. In addition, parents, teachers, and students can easily gauge progress. The Accelerated Reader program bases reading points on three standards: quality, quantity, and reading level.
The Adult Education Program of the St. Tammany Parish School Board operates GED (General Educational Development) high school completion classes, both day and evening. Classes are open to anyone seventeen years of age or older who is not currently enrolled in a regular public school and wishes to complete his or her high school education. Classes are offered at convenient times and places across the parish. This service is offered at no charge.
Students can earn college credit while still in high school through the Advanced Placement program. The program requires students to follow course curriculum prescribed by The College Entrance Examination Board (the College Board) and to pass a test on the subject matter.
In addition to visual arts, music, theater/creative drama, dance/creative movement, and talented arts curricula, students have opportunities to participate in Artist/Teacher Partnerships, Artists-in-Residence presentations, Suzuki Strings, Youth Orchestra, live symphonic concerts, and arts festivals.
ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY TEAM
This group of professionals works collaboratively with parents, teachers, and all related service providers to meet the individual needs of identified disabled students who are not able to address their academic curriculum due to emotional, physical, neurological, and/or cognitive disabilities. The team designs programs and provides equipment to eliminate identified barriers that interfere with academic progress.
CAREER TECH LABS
State-of-the-art Career Technology Labs are in place for all eighth grade students. Students deepen their understanding of math, language, and science concepts as they explore career possibilities in problem-based learning situations.
Before- and/or after-school child care programs are available at some schools for a nominal fee. These programs operate at the discretion of school officials, according to need and must be self-supported through fees assessed to participants.
CLASSROOM ASSISTANCE FOR ATYPICAL BEHAVIORS (CAAB)
In order to help meet the needs of students who exhibit atypical behaviors and social functioning, the School System formed CAAB. This multi-disciplinary team of professionals provides technical assistance and works directly with school teams of educators and parents. CAAB incorporates the “whole child” philosophy to facilitate a successful education program. Special concerns reviewed by the CAAB team include, but are not limited to, the child’s level of academic functioning and curriculum, social interaction and communication skills, the classroom environment, sensory motor capabilities, and overall ability to adapt responses and behaviors across all settings.
COMMUNITY-BASED EDUCATION (CBE)
CBE trains special education students through first-hand experience to become economically self-sufficient and to function in the community.
Community Education is a locally funded, self-generating program designed to maximize the use of school facilities and resources for educational, recreational, and social activities after school hours. Leisure learning classes in a wide range of areas are offered afternoons and evenings to children and adults at designated schools based on needs, interests, and resources. Programs must conform to the requirements set forth in the St. Tammany Parish School Board Policy for the Use of School Facilities and must be self-supported through fees assessed to participants.
DYNAMIC INDICATORS OF BASIC EARLY LITERACY SKILLS (DIBELS)
The Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills (DIBELS) are simple assessments given to students in kindergarten through third grade which measure the critical skills that predict early reading success. A trained team of assessors at each school administers DIBELS Benchmark Assessments to all K-3 students, three times a year. Students experiencing reading difficulties are provided interventions to address the specific skills identified. Monitoring is conducted every three weeks to assess progress made on the specific skill.
DISCIPLINE-BASED ARTS EDUCATION ( DBAE)/COMPREHENSIVE ARTS
DBAE is a process approach to instruction and learning in the arts in St. Tammany Parish public schools. Staff development is available to teachers and arts specialists as they enable students to experience works of art in four ways: history, criticism, aesthetics, and production. The approach encourages intellectual development, cognitive and higher-order thinking skills, creative problem solving, cross cultural understanding, self-esteem, and patience. DBAE is also a natural avenue for linking other disciplines.
All high schools have a Drivers’ Education program that provides training to students in safe, defensive driving skills. The course has a classroom segment as well as a behind-the-wheel segment. The course offers credit toward graduation. Fifteen-year-olds wishing to obtain a learner’s permit are required to take a drivers’ education course.
EDUCATION ST. TAMMANY - CHANNEL 13
The educational access channel provides opportunities to inform St. Tammany residents about System programs and services and other educational topics of interest. Important, timely messages also are broadcast parishwide. School activities, plays, and other events of general interest are produced and broadcast regularly throughout the viewing area.
ELEMENTARY FOREIGN LANGUAGE
This program provides foreign language instruction for students in grades seven and eight. Foreign language teachers teach in Spanish or French languages and provide students cultural enrichment opportunities, as well as second language skills.
ELEMENTARY SUMMER SCHOOL
Summer School is offered for grades one through eight in subjects where a minimum of twelve students register. The program is provided for two purposes: (1) to enable students who have failed a subject(s) to remove deficiencies and be considered for promotion to the next grade, and (2) to enable students to become stronger in a subject(s) in which a need has been recognized.
ENGLISH AS A SECOND LANGUAGE (ESL)
Children whose native language is a language other than English receive help through the ESL program if they are unable to function on grade level. The program aims to help these children become proficient and function on level as quickly as possible.
EXTENDED SCHOOL YEAR PROGRAM (ESYP)
ESYP is a program for disabled students who need educational services in the summer to maintain skills learned during the school year. The services provided are identified by school Individualized Education Program (IEP) committees.
EVERY CHILD A WINNER
This physical education program is taught in the elementary grades in some schools and focuses on physical development as well as self-esteem and self-concept.
EVERY DAY COUNTS MATH (Pre-K-6)
Every Day Counts Math helps students construct math understanding over time at an individual pace, through continuous exposure to critical math concepts and repeated, meaningful practice of basic skills. These concepts include patterns, functions, place value, measurement, time, money, graphing, statistics, mental math, geometry, and estimation. With a calendar, counting tape, clocks, coin counters, graphs, and other elements that change throughout the year, students analyze data, see patterns, explore mathematical relationships, and communicate their thinking.
GIFTED EDUCATION PROGRAM
In order to address the unique needs of gifted students, the Gifted Program offers two distinctly different program options: (1) an academic program and (2) an enrichment pull-out program called KEEP (Keeping Education Exciting and Productive) in three centers across the parish. Through the IEP process, a decision is made regarding a student’s placement in either the academically accelerated classes for grades preschool through twelve or the enrichment classes for grades one through eight. Instructional activities in both programs enhance not only the intellectual functioning of the gifted students, but also their creativity, leadership abilities, and self-concept. Additionally, both programs provide gifted students the opportunity to relate cognitively and affectively with their intellectual peers.
GRADUATE EXIT EXAM (GEE 21) PREPARATION
Students eligible to take the GEE are offered GEE preparation sessions. The sessions are held either before, during, or after school or on Saturdays, prior to the administration of the test.
GRADUATE EXIT EXAM (GEE/GEE 21) REMEDIATION
In high school, students who need remediation to pass one or more components of the GEE may enroll in tutoring sessions before or after school or take a course for remediation.
GO, GROW, AND GLOW
This nutrition education program is geared to children in the primary grades. The program coordinates cafeteria and classroom activities that teach nutrition and promote opportunities for children to make healthy food choices. As a result, students are consuming diets that promote the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) dietary guidelines of increased fiber and decreased sugar, salt, and fat. This program was designated as the most outstanding program of its kind by the Society for Nutrition Education in 1990.
This program is included in seventh grade Health and Physical Education and in the high school Comprehensive Health Unit. The purpose is to help students understand the immune system and the effects of the AIDS virus on the immune system, as well as the transmission and prevention of AIDS.
With special education and regular classroom teachers collaborating to provide the most effective instruction for all students, some special education students receive instruction from special education while in a regular classroom.
Industry-Based Certifications or IBC’s are work-ready certification opportunities offered to high school students. The district offers state approved certifications that meet industry standards. Some of these certifications include the following:
- Certified Nursing Assistant
- Emergency Medical Technician
- The National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER)
- CISCO- Certified Internet Expert
- Internet and Computing Core Certification (IC3)
- Microsoft Office Specialist
- Automotive Service Excellence (ASE)
- Pharmacy Technician
- First Responder
INSTRUCTIONAL TECHNOLOGY CENTER
The Instructional Technology Center houses three Windows computer training labs, a professional development center, a distance learning classroom, a video production and broadcasting studio, and a 350-seat conference center. The center provides a wide range of services, professional development resources, and training opportunities for teachers, administrators, and school staffs.
JUNIOR RESERVE OFFICER TRAINING CORPS (JROTC)
All high schools participate in the JROTC Program. Three are Navy JROTC, two are Army JROTC, one is Marine JROTC, and one is Air Force JROTC.
K - 3 READING AND MATH INITIATIVE
This state-funded program focuses on improving reading and mathematics in kindergarten through third grade. Special emphasis is given to improving the skills of at-risk students. Included are tutoring, intervention strategies, small group instruction, and specialized teacher training. DIBELS (Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills) are used to measure growth in reading skills as part of the K-3 Initiative. Voyager Passport materials are used to tutor first grade students who are experiencing reading difficulties.
LANGUAGE SKILLS CLASS
Language Skills classes are offered to students at the high school level as an alternative method of providing speech therapy services. Students attend the class daily and are taught language-learning strategies to enable them to communicate more effectively in school.
LEARNING-INTENSIVE NETWORKING COMMUNITIES FOR SUCCESS (LINCS)
LINCS is a professional development project that helps teachers to strengthen the design and implementation of standards-based lessons in the classroom. The intent of the program is to improve the academic achievement of K-12 students, as measured by standardized testing. The model uses the Whole-Faculty Study Group (WFSG) method for teachers to explore and develop content knowledge, research-based instructional and assessment strategies, classroom management techniques, and technology skills. Regularly scheduled meetings are held throughout the year for teachers to examine a variety of ways to improve student achievement at their schools.
LOUISIANA EDUCATIONAL ASSESSMENT PROGRAM ( LEAP) ACCELERATION
The program seeks to identify students who will benefit from activities that will increase critical thinking and problem solving skills. Extended learning activities are planned at each school outside the school day to provide accelerated learning opportunities.
LOUISIANA EDUCATIONAL ASSESSMENT PROGRAM ( LEAP) INTERVENTION
Students identified at risk of scoring below the passing level on the English/language arts or mathematics portions of the LEAP test are provided additional, focused instruction in the identified subject area(s). Activities include individual or small group tutoring and other instructional options both during and after the school day.
LOUISIANA EDUCATIONAL ASSESSMENT PROGRAM (LEAP) REMEDIATION
A summer remediation program is provided to students in grades four and eight who have scored below the passing level on the spring LEAP test. The program is offered, prior to the summer retesting, at no cost to students who score below the passing level on the English/language arts or the mathematics portions of the spring LEAP tests. Students who enrolled after the testing dates or were absent during testing also are eligible to attend prior to taking the test for the first time in the summer. Transportation is provided to program sites throughout the parish.
Remediation also is offered during the school year for students not meeting LEAP requirements in any subject. These services may include placement in alternative learning settings, individual/small group tutoring, or other instructional options appropriate to the students’ needs.
LOUISIANA INTEGRATING TECHNOLOGY (INTECH) TRAINING PROGRAM
INTECH is an intensive, structured, 56-hour staff development program for K-12 teachers. INTECH provides many examples of effective technology-based strategies that support and enhance curriculum. Teachers learn how to integrate instructional technology into the student-centered classroom. Louisiana’s Content Standards are the basis for all technology-connected lessons and lesson planning activities. INTECH training cycles are offered throughout the school year and during the summer months.
LOUISIANA TEACHER ASSISTANCE AND ASSESSMENT PROGRAM (LTAAP)
The “Children First Act,” passed by the Louisiana State Legislature in 1988, mandated a statewide teacher assessment program to award certification to teachers who are teaching for the first time in a Louisiana public school. Teachers participating in the LaTAAP process are assigned a mentor for two years to provide support and assistance. In the second year of the LaTAPP process, teachers are assessed by an external assessor and an administrator. The new teachers must demonstrate competence in all assessed portions of the Louisiana Components of Effective Teaching, to receive a recommendation for certification to teach in Louisiana public schools.
MENTAL HEALTH PROVIDERS
Mental health providers offer the counseling services of licensed mental health professionals to all public school students in the parish. Included are individual, group, or family counseling, as well as teacher consultation. Services are accessed through the School Building Level Committee (SBLC)/ Student Assistance Team (SAT) process.
Operation Jumpstart is an alternative school for students in grades six through twelve who have been expelled. The Superintendent recommends students for the program, which is designed to provide basic academic and social skills instruction.
OPTION 3 PRE-GED/SKILLS PROGRAM
This program is an option for students unable to meet state accountability requirements for promotion or graduation. Students must be sixteen years old and must commit to pursue General Educational Development (GED) high school completion and a Skills Certificate. The skills portion of the program is a joint venture with the Louisiana Community and Technical College System.
PARENT INVOLVEMENT PROGRAM
Every school in the district participates in this program. The goal is to involve parents in the child’s education through active participation in school operation and activities (first-aid assistant, library aide, classroom tutor, parenting workshops, chaperones, etc.) Thousands of hours are donated each year by parent volunteers.
PARTNERSHIPS IN EDUCATION
Partnerships in Education is a cooperative program between St. Tammany Parish schools, businesses, and other groups in the community. The partnership program offers “partners” the opportunity to get involved with area schools and learn more about the schools and about public education. Involvement ranges from resource speakers, tutors, internships, and sponsorships to donation of materials, supplies, and equipment.
A variety of preschool programs are offered in many of the elementary schools in the district. These programs provide developmentally appropriate learning activities for children in an environment designed to address their social, emotional, physical, intellectual, and creative growth. All classrooms are organized and evaluated using the Early Childhood Environment Rating Scale (ECERS).
A limited number of Pre-kindergarten programs offered for four-year-old children who are eligible to enter public school kindergarten the following year. These programs are funded by federal and state grants (LA 4, Title I, 8g) and are primarily for students considered either economically or academically at risk.
PRESCHOOL EARLY INTERVENTION
This Special Education program is provided for three through five-year-old students who exhibit developmental delays in one or more areas. Developmentally age-appropriate, pre-school activities and language techniques geared to individual developmental needs of the students are used in the classes. Student placement is decided by the Individualized Education Plan (IEP) Committee, following completion of an evaluation based on state criteria.
PRESCHOOL COMBINATION CLASSES
These classes consist of children from the Pre-kindergarten and Preschool Early Intervention Programs. Special Education and regular education personnel work together to address the individual needs of all students in the classes.
PROJECT D.A.R.E. (DRUG ABUSE RESISTANCE EDUCATION)
D.A.R.E. is designed to equip elementary children with skills for resisting pressure to experiment with drugs and alcohol. D.A.R.E. instructors are police officers who visit classrooms once a week to present the curriculum to students in fifth grade. The officers have been trained in an intense educational program. Law enforcement agencies parishwide have devoted officers to this program.
Project Read is an intervention program for students in grades one through eight who may have difficulty acquiring language-related skills. The program provides a systematic learning experience with direct teaching of concepts and skills through multisensory techniques. The four components of Project Read are phonics, writing, grammar, and comprehension.
all students in grade one are screened for language-related disorders and placed in the Project Read program if needed. Students are provided instruction in the regular education classroom or in a special education setting (if appropriate).
SAFE AND DRUG-FREE SCHOOLS AND COMMUNITIES ACT ( SDFSCA)
As part of the “War on Drugs,” the School System has developed programs funded by Title IV SDFSCA that include education about drug abuse, prevention, intervention, and follow-up. Self-esteem, decision making, and refusal skills are promoted.
With the help of numerous community groups, a wide variety of programs is offered, such as “Just Say No,” “Project Charlie,” “Kids on the Block,” “Red Ribbon Week,” “Every Child A Winner,” peer facilitation, “Second Steps,” “Steps to Respect,” “Character Counts,” “Possible Selves,” and D.A.R.E.
Curriculum for grades Kindergarten through twelve is from the State Substance Abuse Prevention Education guide. Every student receives sixteen hours per year minimum instruction in grade Kindergarten through nine; eight hours in grades ten through twelve. Teachers receive one-hour inservice annually.
Saturday Detention serves as an alternative to out-of-school suspension for violation of school rules. During the hours of detention, students work to increase academic skills, engage in activities to improve self-concept, and address the discipline problem area.
SCHOOL BUILDING LEVEL COMMITTEE (SBLC)/ STUDENT ASSISTANCE TEAM (SAT)
These teams have been established in all schools to draw upon the expertise in the school to address specific problems of children. These teams are the appropriate resources to begin the process of identifying and addressing student academic, behavioral, communication, or other concerns and develop an intervention plan to help the student.
SCHOOL TO WORK/CAREER
School to Work/Career in St. Tammany addresses initiatives leading to post secondary education or immediate employment. Students participate in academies, career paths, internships, co-enrollment opportunities, and industry-based certification programs. They may earn articulated credit to post- secondary institutions in one or more career paths. Some of these paths include the following: Allied Heath, Communications, Culinary Arts, Technology, Engineering, Law and Order, the Arts, Ecology, Building Trades, Teaching, Agriculture, Military, Business, and others. Program success is based in large part on strong business partnerships.
SECOND CHANCE STUDY ALTERNATIVE TO SUSPENSION
The Study Center provides an alternative to suspension that keeps students in school but isolates them from peers. While in the Study Center, students get credit for attendance and classroom assignments. A counselor meets daily with the students assigned to the Study Center.
SECONDARY SUMMER SCHOOL
Summer school for grades nine through twelve is held each year to allow students to earn Carnegie credit in order to graduate in four years, to remove a deficiency, or to improve grade point average by repeating a previously taken course. The student must have written authorization from the high school principal to attend summer school if Carnegie credit is to be awarded.
The 504 program provides modifications, accommodations, and interventions to eligible students who have been identified with learning difficulties. Qualification for the program is based on referral to the School Building Level Committee (SBLC) and evaluation. When a student is identified as eligible, an Individual Program Plan is written for the student by a committee that includes a teacher, the principal, and the school’s 504 coordinator.
This locally adopted curriculum was developed by local educators and reviewed by a parental review committee. Sex Education is taught, with parental permission, in the seventh grade life science curriculum and in the biology curriculum at high schools.
SOUTHERN ASSOCIATION OF COLLEGES AND SCHOOLS/
COUNCIL ON ACCREDITATION AND SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT (SACS/CASI)
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools/Council on Accreditation and School Improvement (SACS/CASI) is a regional accrediting body. All public schools in St. Tammany Parish are accredited as well as the district itself. Membership in SACS/CASI confers recognition to high-quality institutions and encourages improvement through a continuous, systematic method of evaluation.
Accreditation involves the application of standards and the implementation of a district and school improvement process, through self-study and quality assurance review for all levels of education. The St. Tammany Parish Public School System received district accreditation in 2005.
STARS is a locally developed alternative program within regular education that serves as a safety net for at-risk youth entering the second grade. In a self-contained, fifteen-student setting, learning experiences will be designed to address targeted literacy and numeracy skills for each student.
SUMMER ARTS PROGRAM
This series of one- and two-week art camps is conducted in several schools during the month of June. The goal of the program is to give students the opportunity to gain additional experiences in the arts. Classes in art, dance, drama, and keyboard are offered to students in grades K through six.
SUMMER BAND PROGRAM
Sessions are offered at no cost to band students entering fifth through twelfth grade. The program instructors are the seven high school band directors. The Summer Band program concludes with a high school band camp for students in grades nine through twelve.
TALENTED ARTS PROGRAM
Students receiving Talented Arts services must be evaluated and identified as exceptional through the Special education Department. Talented instruction is provided in art, music, and theater.
TEACHING, LEARNING, AND TECHNOLOGY CENTER (TLTC) REGION II TRAINING CENTER
The Instructional Technology Center houses one of the nine regional Training, Learning, and Technology Centers (TLTC) supported by the State Department of Education Louisiana Center for Educational Technology. This center provides technology training for educators from throughout Region II, which includes numerous surrounding school districts. Training focuses on the integration of instructional technology into the classroom curriculum, use of software and computers, and trouble-shooting.
Title I is a federal aid program for elementary and secondary schools and is designed to support services to improve the educational performance of low-achieving children in high-poverty schools. Under the Title I program, eligible schools in St. Tammany Parish receive grants to implement programs that provide a variety of services to children. Funds are used to provide teachers, paraprofessionals, tutors, mental health providers, computer labs, parental involvement activities, one-on-one tutoring after school, and other activities for the students who are achieving below level.
Schools are selected and funds are allocated based on the percentage of students who are on the free or reduced meal program at the school. In St. Tammany Parish, eligible K-5 schools receive Title I funds.
This federal program is designed to provide funds to increase student academic achievement by elevating teacher and principal quality through recruitment, hiring, and retention strategies and to hold local educational agencies and schools accountable for improvements in student academic achievement. The intention is to improve teacher skills in reading, language, math, science, and the other core subjects and to improve the quality of instruction in the nation’s public and private schools. The program provides support for professional development opportunities for teachers in grades Kindergarten through twelve. The primary use of Title II funds in the School System is for class-size reduction (CSR) teachers.
TRANSITIONAL FIRST GRADE
A Developmental Placement Program is an integral part of the primary grade structure in St. Tammany Parish Public Schools. An optional transitional grade, or growth year, is offered for students in the mainstream of education who have completed kindergarten, yet are not ready for a full first grade program. The transitional first grade program is designed to place students where they may achieve successfully and realize their full potential without undue stress. A developmental first grade curriculum is taught.
21st CENTURY COMMUNITY LEARNING CENTERS
Through a three-year 21st Century Community Learning Centers grant, the St. Tammany Parish Public School System has four centers that provide academic tutoring by adults and high school and college students. Students are tutored in reading, mathematics, science, and writing; homework assistance; computer and technological literacy; enrichment programs in art and drama; recreational sports; nutrition; integrated drug and violence reduction/ prevention activities; and parent and community programs. These centers provide summer programs and after-school and evening opportunities for learning in a safe and drug-free environment. Brock Elementary, Chahta-Ima Elementary, Creekside Junior High, and Pine View Middle Schools house the centers. Services are available to students, families, and community members in these four communities. Limited funding may restrict the number of people who can be served at one time.
VOCATIONAL-BASED EDUCATION (VBE)
This program is designed to assist students with disabilities in the transition from school to adult life. Students pursuing an alternative curricular program have a variety of opportunities for job training in natural settings. This experience helps students find paid employment upon graduation.
An important component of the parish curriculum is the Vocational Education Program, which is in most of the junior high schools and all of the high schools. Agriscience, business education, cooperative office education, distributive education, family and consumer science, and technology education are offered at the high schools.
WIN is a locally developed alternative program within regular education that serves as a safety net for at-risk youth in the elementary grades. In a self-contained, fifteen-student setting, students work on individual academic and social needs. Focal points are enhancing parental involvement and addressing areas of deficiency as measured by LEAP.
YOUTH EDUCATIONAL SUCCESS (YES)
YES is a locally developed alternative program for at-risk students at the junior high level. In a self-contained, fifteen-student setting, students address academic and social skills in an integrated program of studies. Career goals setting, self-concept building, basic skills instruction, and parental involvement are key elements.