The Ida B. Wells Community Academy
 

Educational Philosophy and Program
 

Novi quid ex Africa!
"Everything new comes out of Africa!"  Pliny


TABLE OF CONTENTS
Mission Statement
Educational Philosophy
Characteristics of Students
Academic Goals
    At the end of Kindergarten
    At the end of First Grade
    At the end of Second Grade
    At the end of Third Grade
    Fourth-Grade Proficiency Outcomes
        Writing
        Reading
        Mathematics
        Citizenship
        Science
    Sixth-Grade Proficiency Outcomes
        Writing
        Reading
        Mathematics
        Citizenship
        Science Learning Outcomes
Focus of the Curriculum
Assessment System
Tools for Assessment
Summer Extended Education Program
Special Education
Calendar and Schedule
Daily Class Schedule
 

Mission Statement

The Ida B. Wells Community Academy's mission is to educate youth (5 to 11 years of age) 
in Kindergarten through the 6th grade in an innovative, diverse, holistic and intellectually challenging educational atmosphere. The IBWCA curriculum is: 

      1. personalized, problem-posing and problem-solving, 
      2. devoted to the provision of quality instruction in the humanities, mathematics, the physical and natural sciences, citizenship, the arts, the social sciences, and African and world culture studies, 
      3. emphasizes preparing students to pass at the 75th percentile or better on the fourth, sixth (and in due course, the ninth and twelfth) grade proficiency tests, 
      4. a fully democratic and participatory educational process, and 
      5. has a well conceived policy outlining the rights and responsibilities of parents, students, teachers and administrators.

Educational Philosophy

The Ida B. Wells Community Academy is committed to engendering in its students intellectual curiosity and stresses high academic standards and rigorous performance expectations. Students will be taught a basic skills program with an interdisciplinary (holistic) learning focus. IBWCA's educational philosophy  emphasizes in its program structure and instructional design the following essential curricular and procedural ingredients:

      1. Small classes that are holistic and culturally integrative, and designed to enhance at all levels the students' proficiency in the basic skills and mastery of proficiency standards mandated by the State of Ohio in combination with the managers of the Ida B. Wells Community Academy in collaboration with its teachers, parents and students;
      2. Team-teaching emphasis stressed where appropriate (on occasion students may be assigned to a team of teachers); using parents, community residents, retired professionals and businessmen or 
-women as part-time teachers, teaching assistants or educational consultants;
      3. Small student to teacher ratio (15:1) to respond (a) to the composition of the student body and (b) to facilitate individualized instruction based on interests and needs; this ratio will also support the institution of a "learning-through-doing" (active vs. passive) instructional design;
      4. Meeting students where they are socially, culturally, physically and academically and then moving them to higher and different academic levels supported by incorporating instructional themes such as the avoidance of threat, meaningful and relevant content, learning style choices, sufficient time to assimilate content, enriched learning environment, student-to-student collaboration, and immediate feedback; of especial importance in this context is the programmatic notion that all children can learn. It is incumbent on IBWCA to devise means to design appropriate strategies to "lead that learning out," i.e., make it 
happen;
      5. Self-learning projects that are student or teacher initiated, conducted first in-school 
and later, based on student maturity, conducted out-of-school;
      6. The interdisciplinary (holistic) model allows students to experience how one set of basic skills directly relates to other basic skills, i.e., reading to mathematics, geography to social sciences, mathematics to science, culture to history; and how all these relate to 
being truly educated and to life in general (see Alfred North Whitehead's The Aims of Education and Other Essays, 1967, pp. 6-7; and 7. An extended year calendar of 210 days (with 180 regular school days and 30 summer school days).

IBWCA's instructional philosophy and program structure are designed to maintain curricular and operational flexibility. IBWCA will assess its students' success rate and, if necessary, will incorporate revised or different learning and operational strategies. IBWCA is intent on infusing into its curriculum a diversity element with emphasis on African America, Africa, Native America, Latin America and the world.

Parents will be equal partners of IBWCA involved in meaningful and critical operational and managerial imperatives throughout IBWCA's start-up and operational phases. These imperatives include teaching, administrative and governance functions, committee assignments of various sorts, e.g., discipline, student recruitment and admissions, faculty/staff hiring and training, transportation, fund raising, and facility management and identification. Their children will attend an educational program wherein they, too, will have a role in the program's operation. IBWCA's program structure and continuum of educational options and procedural safeguards are designed to meet the needs of students in an educational safe haven intent on achieving educational and social excellence.

Characteristics of Students

The school's intended students will be from 5 to 11 years old and be enrolled in the following grade levels over the course of five years:

     Proiected School Enrollment

       60     Year One        Kindergarten, 1st, 2nd
       90     Year Two        Kindergarten, 1st, 2nd, 3rd
     120     Year Three      Kindergarten, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th
     150     Year Four       Kindergarten, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th
     180     Year Five        Kindergarten, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th

     Student:Teacher Ratio: 15:1

The Ida B. Wells Community Academy (IBWCA) will serve students residing within the Akron Public School District. These students will be between the ages of 5 to 11 years of age. IBWCA's decision to maintain a low student:teacher ratio will best serve its students and strengthen its efforts to increase educational performance, enhance educational quality, and augment and diversify educational content. Even though IBWCA's mission is to eventually serve students from Kindergarten to High School, it will serve only students in kindergarten through the 6th grade, adding, during this five-year contract period, one grade per year.

Academic Goals

IBWCA's curricular content at each grade level will produce the following expected and measurable performance objectives as contained in the Ohio Department of Education's published Competency-Based Programs for Social Studies, Language Arts, Mathematics, Comprehensive Arts, Foreign Languages and the Natural and Physical Sciences. More specifically, IBWCA assures students and parents that its kindergarten, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 
5th and 6th grade students will be able to demonstrate measurable competence not only on the above stated performance goals and objectives but also on the performance 
assessments developed by IBWCA and the required Ohio Proficiency Tests for the 4th and 6th grades.

IBWCA's Board of Governor's through its Curriculum and Assessment Committee will in collaboration with the faculty and the Advisory Board, i.e., the IBWCA Site-Based Management Team, devise grade-level instructional objectives along with demonstrable performance objectives and examples. IBWCA's curriculum follows the basics of standard public school curricula with one noteworthy addition "The Cultural Dimension," i.e., structured instruction in cultures of non-European Americans and other world cultures. 
IBWCA will operate from an educational perspective that embraces curricular diversity, high and comprehensive learning and behavioral standards. Furthermore, IBWCA will provide its enrollees at all grade levels with a physical education program designed around various physical activities such as modern and African dance, running, jumping, sprinting, acrobatics (tumbling, headstands, throwing, catching, somersaults, leapfrogging, etc.), some martial 
arts training, e.g., karate and capoeira (a traditional Afro-Brazilian martial art), volley ball, baseball and basketball.

The Ida B. Wells Community Academy guarantees its students' academic competency in 
the grade levels of its enrolled students (K-6) by addressing several academic performance objectives. These performance objectives are specific enough to describe the level of performance expected at the appropriate level of sophistication for the learner. Teachers and learners can determine their individual (or personal) levels of achievement which are designed to . . .

      1. Develop students' use of an expanding knowledge base.
      2. Enable students to put together meaningful relationships and apply critical and analytical thinking learning strategies.
      3. Enable learners to become proficient in the selection, comprehension, and appreciation of good intellectual and study habits.
      4. Enable learners to participate in a community of learners that supports holistic learning and the use of electronic and print media.
      5. Engage students in independent learning programs tailored to their individual interests, needs, and personalities and supported by classroom, and community libraries.
      6. Encourage students to be self-critical and intellectually curious to improve and advance their abilities to related what they are learning to other in and out of school situations.
      7. Utilize a variety of learning strategies and learn to devise, monitor and revamp their own learning and comprehension strategies.
      8. Enable learners to understand, accept, and appreciate their own and diverse world cultures through a variety of learning experiences in various curricular areas Language Arts, Social Studies (Citizenship), Mathematics, the Visual and Performing Arts, the Natural and Life Sciences, and Foreign Languages.

Essential to IBWCA's learning strategies is the development of a curriculum that is aligned with teaching and the methods (tests, portfolios, performance, demonstrations and other faculty agreed upon indicators of learning. The goal/object is to have students know how to perform various tasks from Kindergarten to Grade 6. An interest in isolated facts, although important, is in IBWCA's view secondary to being able to use facts as well as other information to perform required tasks.

For those grade levels, for which there are no OPTs, IBWCA will on a consistent basis assess, align and realign its curricular emphases to correlate with the learning outcomes expected on the 4th and 6th grade proficiency tests. This does not imply teaching to the OPTs. It does imply that IBWCA will keep the learning objectives of students and parents in focus. Minimally students should be able . . . 

. . . at the end of Kindergarten . . .

      to sort objects by color, size shape, weight; create, recognize and repeat patterns with  blocks, cubes, sticks or tubes; recognize numbers and relate them to numerals; match objects with one to one correspondence; separate and join sets of objects; use counters to visualize abstract mathematical concepts; compare objects according to various lengths and weights;
      to prepare, expound on and maintain a personal learning log or journal;
      to identify letters of the alphabet consonants and vowels;
      to recognize various occupations via pictures, i.e., mailman, store clerk, teacher, minister, baseball player, etc.;
      to understand various life cycles: young to old, caterpillar to butterfly, tadpole to frog;
      to recognize seasonal changes, e.g., winter, spring, summer, autumn, and the aging process of humans and other animals;
      to recognize various astronomical elements sun, moon, stars, planets; and earth science phenomena wind, snow and ice, rain, water, fire, etc.;
      to read and use maps, photographs, pictures, the globe and other learning tools to identify life at the home, family relationships, school items desks, chairs, tables, etc.; demonstrate position words above/below, left/right, front/back, up/down;
      to understand the need for rules and regulations and good in-school and at-home behavior;
      to use symbols to describe various problems or situations; predict, draw, act out and/or solve problem situations;
      to demonstrate an awareness of different places to live for people, insects, and animals;
      to recite poetry of various sorts from nursery rhymes and children's literature and sing songs related to reaming topics;
      to demonstrate artistic and muscular coordination via finger painting, dance, simple gymnastics, etc.; and
      to exhibit an elementary ability to pronounce and use various selected greetings in a foreign language, e.g., Kiswahili. The instructor's availability and skills will determine which African language is taught.

. . . at the end of first grade . . .

      to sort objects using multiple attributes, e.g., small/large, uni-/bi-dimensional, round/ square;
      to extend missing elements of repeating patterns/numbers; separate and join numerical set;
      to count forward/backward to 100 by ones, twos and fives; identify even and odd numbers; identify ordinal numbers, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, etc.; recognize when to add or subtract, describe in words and symbols; demonstrate ability to do simple addition and subtraction 
and recognize and write simple fractions 1/4, 1/2, 3/4; tell time on the hour and half hour and tell time in 15 minute intervals; count pennies, nickels and dimes;
      to identify needed and not needed information to solve problems, mathematical or otherwise; explain a problem situation using a drawing or picture (photograph); demonstrate solving a problem using patterns or the manipulation of objects; match objects with one to 
one correspondence; separate and join sets of objects; use counters to visualize abstract mathematical concepts; compare and order sets according to more, less or same;
      to observe, describe and sort various objects inanimate and animate and place them according to category; recognize various racial, ethnic and national types;
      to demonstrate ability to find places on the globe or world maps, United States, Africa, Europe, Asia;
      to read maps, photos and simple diagrams and graphs; grasp how families need food, clothing, and shelter;
      to manipulate and combine shapes and sizes of objects in the environment uni- and three dimensional, circle, triangle, flat, square, cube, cylinder, cone, etc.;
      to demonstrate an awareness of life cycles;
      to prepare and maintain a personal learning log or journal;
      to understand how plants and animals are dependent on other plants and animals;
      to understand various occupations as well understand the people live in neighborhoods, states, and countries; and
      to demonstrate an increased ability to pronounce and use greetings, names of things and places, classroom objects, and longer phrases of three or four words and converse in an African language with limited fluency.

. . . at the end of second . . .

        to use a number line; read and write three-digit numbers and round numbers up or down to the nearest five, i.e., is 13 is closer to 10 than 26? or is 20 closer to 18 than to 30?
      to add and subtract double-digit numbers and measure length and width in inches and centimeters using a ruler;
      to construct and use matrices for addition, subtraction, multiplication;
      to understand and use maps, photographs; read graphs; demonstrate an understanding of the occupations of their parents, neighbors and relatives; how people in their community and other communities earn a living;
      to solve and pose problems based on situations they have experienced or stories they have read and heard or that they have made up;
        to prepare and maintain a personal learning log or journal; summarize information gleaned from reading assigned or self-initiated; memorize poems, songs and pledges;
      to conduct independent research on topics related to animals, insects, or people and their occupations; and
      to show an increased pronunciation and conversational ability in an African language, i.e., greetings, names of things and places, and longer phrases of several words and short readings, e.g., proverbs and aphorisms.

. . . at the end of third grade . . . 

      to display data in line plots, group and count by hundreds; compare and order numbers through hundred thousands; to compare and order numbers through one million, 
      to understand graphs, explore decimals and fractions.
      to add and group amounts up to hundred thousands; to estimate addition problem answers; to subtract three-digit amounts, multiply and divide, to use a calculator;
      to collect and organize data about the world around them; 
      to explain why people stay healthy, understand lifecycles of critters such as frogs, butterflies, and chickens;
      to read maps, photos, graphs, time lines, diagrams and tables;
      to use a dictionary;
      to share thoughts about favorite authors and illustrators; 
      to read, listen to and respond to literature from a variety of cultures;
      to read maps, photos, time lines, diagrams, tables;
      to demonstrate folk customs of a variety peoples and explain the climates of various world geographic regions;
      to discuss one's neighborhood, community and state;
      to identify different genres of literature, for example, fiction, poetry and biography;
      to demonstrate an increased ability to pronounce and use greetings, names of things and places, classroom objects, and longer phrases of three or four words and converse in an African language with increased fluency.

These minimal Board of Governors and teacher determined learning objectives will prepare students to exhibit in the early years learning that correlates well with those proficiencies needed to demonstrate competence on the 4th and 6th grade OPTs as summarized below:

Fourth-Grade Proficiency Outcomes:

Writing

Each activity direction will be constructed to elicit two of the following different purposes (modes) for writing: a long piece such as a fictional or personal experience narrative, or an informational piece (report), and a shorter piece such as a communication (friendly letter, invitation, thank-you note, letter to the editor, directions, or journal), a summary, or a retelling.

Given an assigned activity direction intended to elicit two of the above modes of writing, the learner will use the writing process to make the intended message clear, as evidenced by

             a. a response that stays on topic;
             b. the use of details to support the topic;
             c. an organized and logical response that flows naturally and has a beginning, 
middle and end;
             d. the use of a variety of words;
             e. the use of a variety of sentence patterns;
             f. a response that shows an awareness of word usage (vocabulary, homonyms, and words in context);
             g. a response that shows an awareness of spelling patterns for commonly used words;
             h. Iegible writing in print or cursive;
             i. the correct use of capital letters (beginning of sentences and for proper nouns) and end punctuation.

Reading

Given a fiction/poetry text to read silently, learners will demonstrate an understanding of language and elements of fiction/poetry by responding to items in which they:

        1. summarize the text;
        2. use graphic aids (for example, a table or graph) or illustrations to locate or interpret information;
        3. demonstrate an understanding of text by retelling the story or poem, in writing, in own words;
        4. identify and interpret vocabulary (words, phrases, or expressions) critical to the meaning of the text.

Given a fiction/poetry text to read silently, learners will demonstrate an understanding of language and elements of fiction/poetry by responding to items in which they:

        5. analyze the text, examining, for example, actions of characters, problem/ solution, plot, or point of view;
        6. infer from the text;
        7. compare and/or contrast elements such as characters, settings, or events;
        8. respond to the text;
        9. choose materials related to purposes, as evidenced in part by the capacity to 

            a. choose or identify library resources to locate specific information; 
            b. select fiction and nonfiction materials in response to a topic or theme; 
            c. choose appropriate resources and materials to solve problems and make decisions;

      10. demonstrate an understanding of text by predicting outcomes and actions.

Given a nonfiction text to read silently, learners will demonstrate an understanding of language and elements of nonfiction by responding to items in which they:

      11. summarize the text;
      12. use graphic aids (for example, a table or graph) or illustrations to locate or interpret information;
      13. demonstrate an understanding of text by retelling the information, in writing, in own words;
      14. identify and interpret vocabulary (words, phrases, or expressions) critical to the meaning of the text.

Given a nonfiction text to read silently, learners will demonstrate an understanding of language and elements of nonfiction by responding to items in which they:

      15. discern major ideas and supporting ideas;
      16. analyze the text, examining, for example, comparison and contrast, cause and effect, or fact and Opinion;
      17. infer from the text;
      18. respond to the text.
      19. choose materials related to purposes, as evidenced in part by the capacity to

            a. choose or identify library resources to locate specific information;
            b. select fiction and nonfiction materials in response to a topic or theme;
            c. choose appropriate resources and materials to solve problems and make decisions;

      20. demonstrate an understanding of text by predicting outcomes and actions.

Mathematics

       1. Sort or identify objects on multiple attributes (e.g., size, shape, and shading).
       2. Use patterns to make generalizations and predictions by

           a. determining a rule and identifying missing numbers in a sequence;
           b. determining a rule and identifying missing numbers in a table of number pairs;
           c. identifying missing elements in a pattern and justifying their inclusion; and
           d. determining a rule and identifying missing numbers in a sequence of numbers or a table of number pairs related by a combination of addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division.

       3. Select appropriate notation and methods for symbolizing a problem situation, translate real-life situations into conventional symbols of mathematics, and represent operations using models, conventional symbols, and words.
       4. Identify needed information to solve a problem.
       5. Explain or illustrate whether a solution is correct.
       6. Decompose, combine, order, and compare numbers.
       7. Illustrate or identify fractional parts of whole objects or set of objects and like fractions greater than one, and add and subtract like fractions with illustrations and symbols.
       8. Add, subtract, multiply, and divide whole numbers and explain, illustrate, or select thinking strategies for making computations.
       9. Order fractions using symbols as well as the terms "at least" and "at most".
     10. Represent whole number value by

           a. applying place value ideas;
           b. translating between words and symbols in naming whole numbers.

     11. Add and subtract decimals.
     12. Apply congruence, symmetry, paths, simple closed curves, and the ideas of interior and exterior.
     13. Recognize parallel, intersecting, and perpendicular lines, and right angles in geometric figures.
     14. Determine properties of two-dimensional figures and compare shapes according to their characterizing properties, identify two-dimensional shapes on a picture of a three-dimensional object, and compare three-dimensional objects describing similarities and differences using appropriate standard and non-standard language.
     15. Symbolize a keying sequence on a calculator and predict the display.
     16. Model a problem situation using a number phrase/sentence and/or letters, understand the use of letters and symbols in statements such as 4b=12 or 3c=15 and find the value for a letter or symbol if the value for the other letter or symbol is given, and recognize the use of variables to generalize arithmetic statements applying the concept of odd and even numbers.
     17. Apply the use of tools to measure lengths, using centimeter and inches including recognizing the positions of whole numbers and fractions on a number line.
     18. Apply the counting of collections of coins and bills (which could include one, five, and ten dollar bills) in a buying situation.
     19. Illustrate the approximate size of units of length, capacity, and weight; choose an appropriate unit to measure lengths, capacities! and weights in U.S. standard and metric units; and relate the number of units that measure an object to the size of the unit as well as to the size of the object.
     20. Determine perimeters and areas of simple straight line figures and regions without using formulas.
     21. Use mental, paper-and-pencil, and physical strategies to determine time elapsed.
     22. Apply concept of place value in making estimates in addition and subtraction using front-end digits.
     23. Round numbers and use multiples of ten to estimate sums, differences, and products and discuss whether estimates are greater than or less than an exact sum or difference.
     24. Make or use a table to record and sort information (in a problem-solving setting using simple and complex patterns in nature, art, or poetry as setting) and make identifications, comparisons, and predictions from tables, picture graphs, bar graphs, and labeled picture maps.
     25. Find simple experimental probabilities and identify events that are sure to happen, events sure not to happen, and those we cannot be sure about.

Citizenship

      1. Demonstrate knowledge of and ability to think about the relationship among events by: 

          a. identifying sequence of events in history; 
          b. grouping events by broad historical eras on a time line; 
          c. recognizing that change occurs in history; or d. identifying cause-and-effect relationships.

      2. Identify and use sources of information about a given topic in the history of Ohio and the United States.
      3. Relate major events and individuals in state history to time periods in the history of the nation and the world.
      4. Identify the various kinds of cultural groups* that have lived or live in Ohio.
      5. Identify or explain how various cultural groups have participated in the state's development.
      6. Identify or compare the customs, traditions, and needs of Ohio's various cultural groups.
      7. Demonstrate map skills by: 

          a. identifying various major reference points on the earth; 
          b. locating major land forms and bodies of water; or
          c. using a number/letter grid system to locate places on a map, a map key to understand map symbols, a linear scale to measure distances on a map, and a direction indicator.

      8. Use maps and diagrams as a source of information to: 

          a. recognize continents by their outlines and major physical features; 
          b. recognize characteristics of major land forms and bodies of water; 
          c. describe physical differences between places; or 
          d. explain the influence of the natural environment on the settlement of Ohio and on changes in population patterns, transportation, and land use.

      9. Identify or describe the location of Ohio in relation to other states, to regions of the United States,
and to major physical features of North America.
    10. Identify the factors of production (land, labor, capital, and entrepreneurship) needed to produce various goods and services. 
    11. Name the resources needed to produce various goods and services, classify each resource by the factors of production, or suggest alternative uses for those factors.
    12. Classify various economic activities as examples of production or consumption.
    13. Identify the function of each branch of state government.
    14. Identify the purposes of state government (state government refers to the government of a state of the United States of America).
    15. Identify or explain the purposes of local government.
    16. Differentiate between statements of fact and opinion found in information about public issues and policies.
    17. Identify and assess the possibilities of group decision making, cooperative activity, and personal involvement in the community.
    18. Identify the elements of rules relating to fair play.

*The phrase "cultural groups" refers to a number of individuals sharing unique characteristics (e.g., race, ethnicity, national origin, and religion).

 Science Learning Outcomes

     1. Create and use categories to organize a set of objects, organisms or phenomena.
     2. Select instruments to make observations and/or organize observations of an event, object, or organism.
     3. Identify and/or compare the mass, dimensions, and volume of familiar objects in standard and/or nonstandard units.
     4. Use a simple key to distinguish between objects.
     5. Analyze a series of events and/or simple daily or seasonal cycles and predict the next likely occurrence in the sequence.
     6. Evaluate a simple procedure to carry out an exploration.
     7. Identify and/or discuss the selection of resources and tools used for exploring scientific phenomena.
     8. Evaluate observations and measurements made by other persons.
     9. Demonstrate an understanding of safe use of materials and/or devices in science activities.
    10. Explain the operation of a simple mechanical device.
    11. Identify characteristics of a simple physical change.
    12. Explain and/or predict the motion of objects and/or describe the effects of some objects on other objects.
    13. Make predictions about the weather from observed conditions and weather maps.
    14. Identify and/or describe the relationship between human activity and the environment.
    15. Identify evidence and show examples of changes in the earth's surface.
    16. Demonstrate an understanding of the basic needs of living things.
    17. Identify ways in which organisms react to changing environments.
    18. Distinguish between living and nonliving things and provide justification for these distinctions.
    19. Analyze and/or evaluate various nutritional plans for humans.

Sixth Grade Proficiency Outcomes:

Writing 

The student will be given one prompt or topic which will direct two writing activities, each in a different mode (purpose for writing). The student will be given the two modes which will be selected from the following: fictional or personal experience narrative, a persuasive piece, informational writing, a communication (letter, invitation, memo, thank-you note, letter to the editor, directions), a journal entry, or a summary.

The student will use the writing process to make the writing activities clear for the intended audience, as evidenced by the capacity to

          a. focus on the topic with adequate supporting ideas or examples;
          b. exhibit a logical organizational pattern that demonstrates a sense of flow and conveys a sense of completeness and wholeness;
          c. exhibit word choice appropriate to the subject, the purpose and the intended audience;
          d. communicate clarity of thought;
          e. use complete sentences except where purposeful phrases or clauses are desirable;
          f. write legibly using cursive or manuscript;
          g. demonstrate correct usage, correct spelling of frequently used words, and correct punctuation and capitalization;
          h. include sentences of varied length and structure.

Reading Learning Outcomes

  Fiction or Poetry Selections:

Given a fiction or poetry text to read silently, learners will demonstrate an understanding of text and elements of fiction or poetry by responding to items in which they:

       1. analyze aspects of the text, examining, for example, characters, setting, plot, problem/solution, point of view, or theme;
       2. summarize the text;
       3. infer from the text; and/or
       4. respond to the text.

Given a fiction or poetry text to read silently, learners will demonstrate an understanding of text and elements of fiction or poetry by responding to items in which they:

       5. compare and contrast aspects of the text, for example, characters or settings;
       6. critique and evaluate the text;
       7. select information for a variety of purposes, including enjoyment;
       8. express reasons for recommending or not recommending the text for a particular audience or purpose; and/or
       9. explain how an author uses contents of a text to support his/her purpose for writing.

  Nonfiction Selections:

Given a nonfiction text to read silently, learners will demonstrate an understanding of text and elements of nonfiction by responding to items in which they:

     10. analyze the text, examining, for example, author's use of comparison and contrast, cause and effect, or fact and opinion;
     11. summarize the text;
     12. infer f rom the text; and/or 
     13. respond to the text.

Given a nonfiction text to read silently, learners will demonstrate an understanding of text and elements of nonfiction by responding to items in which they:

     14. compare and/or contrast aspects of the text;
     15. critique and evaluate the text for such elements as organizational structure and logical reasoning;
     16. select information from a variety of resources to support ideas, concepts, and interpretations;
     17. express reasons for recommending or not recommending the text for a particular audience or purpose; and/or
    18. explain how an author uses contents of a text to support his/her purpose for writing.

Mathematics

      1. Apply the relation between doubling the side of a regular figure and the corresponding increase in area.
      2. Determine the rule, identify missing numbers, and/or find the nth term in a sequence of numbers or a table of numbers involving one operation or power.
      3. Apply appropriate notations and methods for symbolizing the problem statement and solution process.
      4. Identify needed and given information in a problem situation, as well as irrelevant information.
      5. Validate and/or generalize solutions and problem-solving strategies.
      6. Compute with whole numbers, fractions, and decimals.
      7. Find equivalent fractions.
      8. Change freely between fractions and decimals.
      9. Order combinations of whole numbers, fractions, and decimals by using the symbols <, <, >, >, and = and/or by placing them on a number line.
     10. Use ratios and proportions in a wide variety of applications.
     11. Visualize and show the results of rotation, translation, reflection, or stretching of geometric figures.
     12.  Recognize, classify, and/or use characteristics of lines and simple two-dimensional figures including circles; and apply models and properties to characterize and/or contrast different classes of figures including three-dimensional figures.
     13. Use the distributive property in arithmetic computations.
     14. Explain and reflect differences between calculators with arithmetic logic and calculators with algebraic logic when symbolizing a keying sequence and identifying the display as each key is pressed.
     15. Use variables to describe arithmetic processes, to generalize arithmetic statements, and to generalize a problem situation.
     16. Determine perimeters, areas, and volumes of common polygons, circles, and solids using counting techniques or formulas.
     17. Convert, compare, and compute with common units of measure within the same measurement system.
     18. Measure angles with a protractor.
     19. Apply appropriate strategies to find estimates of sums, differences, products, and quotients of whole numbers (and determine whether the estimate is greater than or less than the exact result).
     20. Estimate the sum, difference, product, or quotient of decimal numbers by rounding, and the sum, difference, or product of fractions and/or mixed numbers by rounding the fractions to 0, 1/2, or 1.
     21. Collect data, create a table, picture graph, bar graph, circle graph, or line graph, and use them to solve application problems.
     22. Read, interpret, and use tables, charts, maps, and graphs to identify patterns, note trends, and draw conclusions.
     23. Apply the concept of average and calculate the arithmetic mean and mode of a given set of numbers.
     24. Make predictions of outcomes of experiments based upon theoretical probabilities and explain actual outcomes.

Citizenship

       1. Demonstrate knowledge of and ability to think about the relationship among events: a. group significant individuals by broadly defined historical eras b. utilize multiple-tier time lines.
       2. Utilize a variety of resources to consider information from different perspectives about North America: a. identify the central idea an historical narrative attempts to address b. inquire into the relative credibility of sources
       3. Identify significant individuals from the past in North America and explain their contributions to the cultural heritage of the United States.
       4. Identify a significant individual from a region of the world other than North America and discuss cause-and-effect relationships surrounding a major event in the individual's life.
       5. Compare the gender roles, religious ideas, or class structures in two societies.
       6. Draw inferences about the experiences, problems, and opportunities that cultural groups* encountered in the past.
       7. Describe how the customs and traditions of immigrant and other groups have shaped American life.
       8. Utilize map skills:

             a. apply latitude and longitude to locate points on maps and globes
             b. distinguish between relevant and irrelevant information on a map for a specific task

       9. Interpret and analyze maps, charts, or graphs to formulate geographic ideas: 

           a. utilize time zones to compute differences in time and to describe their impact on human activities
           b. determine and explain relationships among resources, economic activities, and population distribution.

      10. Use maps of North America or the world to identify physical and cultural regions and to show relationships among regions.
      11. Examine instances of contact between people of different regions of the world and determine the reasons for these contacts.
      12. Describe the role of each factor of production in producing a specific good or service and suggest alternative uses for the resources involved.
      13. Identify the factors that influence: a. consumer decisions to demand goods or services b. producer decisions to supply goods or services
      14. Identify the factors that determine the degree of competition in a market and describe the impact of competition on a market:

             a. identify advantages and disadvantages of competition in the marketplace
             b. explain the general relationship between supply, demand, and price in a competitive market

      15. Use information about global resource distribution to make generalizations about why nations engage in international trade.
      16. Identify the main functions of the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of the United States national government and cite activities related to these functions.
      17. Interpret how examples of political activity illustrate characteristics of American democracy.
      18. Classify characteristics of government that are typical of a monarchal, democratic, or dictatorial type of government.
     19. Analyze information on civic issues by organizing key ideas with their supporting facts.
     20. Identify and analyze alternatives through which civic goals can be achieved and select an appropriate alternative based upon a set of criteria.
     21. Identify ways to resolve private and public conflicts based on principles of fairness and justice.
     22. Identify examples of citizen participation in political systems around the world.

          * The expression "cultural groups" refers to a number of individuals sharing unique characteristics (e.g., race, ethnicity, national origin, and religion).

Science

       1. Use a simple key to classify objects, organisms, and/or phenomena.
       2. Identify the potential hazards and/or precautions involved in scientific investigations.
       3. Make inferences from observations of phenomena and/or events.
       4. Identify the positive and/or negative impact of technology on human activity.
       5. Evaluate conclusions based on scientific data.
       6. Recognize the advantages and/or disadvantages to the user in the operation of simple technological devices.
       7. Predict the influences of the motion of some objects on other objects.
       8. Propose and/or evaluate an investigation of simple physical and/or chemical changes.
       9. Provide examples of transformation and/or conservation of matter and energy in simple physical systems.
     10. Identify simple patterns in physical phenomena.
     11. Describe simple cycles of the earth and moon.
     12. Identify characteristics and/or patterns in rocks and soil.
     13. Demonstrate an understanding of the cycling of resources on earth, such as carbon, nitrogen, and/or water.
     14. Trace the transmission of energy in a small, simple ecosystem and/or identify the roles of organisms in the energy movement in an ecosystem.
     15. Compare and/or contrast the diversity of ways in which living things meet their needs.
     16. Analyze behaviors and/or activities that positively or negatively influence human health. 
     17. Analyze the impacts of human activity on the ecosystems of the earth.

Focus of the Curriculum

The Ida B. Wells Community Academy introduces its students to a culturally integrative curriculum designed to infuse content that is at once nurturing, stimulating, intended to engage students' intellectual curiosity, and imbue in its students a mutual respect for learning proficiency, competence and self direction not only in traditional learning objectives but also in the attainment of knowledge of their cultures, traditions and values. Students will also learn to appreciate themselves, their fellow students, their families, their community and their nation. IBWCA's goals include creating a responsive and innovative learning environment that will instruct students based on these programmatic objectives:

      1. prepare all students to function competently and productively in an ever more complex and technological global society;
      2. achieve increased academic performance expectations and measured proficiency outcomes
      3. increase students' daily attendance records and to implement creative disciplinary methods to reduce suspensions and dismissals;
      4. involve the professional community, parents, retired teachers and students directly in the learning process;
      5. design a curriculum that can be partially reliant on the learning potential of the World Wide Web so as to augment class assignments and individual student research;
      6. assure students and parents that they will be able to transition, with ease, out of IBWCA into the Akron Public Schools or an equivalent public educational system; and
      7. provide students, parents and faculty/staff with a detailed handbook that clearly outlines their rights and responsibilities. The rights of all students, parents and faculty shall be recognized without regard to race, religion, sex, disability, or intellectual ability. Student responsibilities include regular school attendance, conscientious effort in classroom work, conformance to school rules and regulations, and the responsibility not to interfere with the education of fellow students or the orderly operation of the school. These rights and responsibilities, as they pertain to students, begin with kindergarten and extend through the sixth grade.

These objectives represent only the minimum operational and curricular foci of the Ida B. Wells Community Academy. Given IBWCA's emphasis on allowing its students to grow at their own pace, we expect a number of students will show even higher levels of performance. IBWCA will see that every child receives a quality education and learns what it means to strive to be excellent in all their endeavors in school, at home, in the neighborhood, in sports, in art, in music and dance, in reading, writing and arithmetic.

Classrooms will be administered by a trained and experienced teacher-principal and individually managed by certified teachers or teaching teams in collaboration with teacher assistants. A trained special education teacher (or teachers) will be on staff. These teachers will construct matrices of teaching strategies that will encompass the following areas and a number of others, e.g., classroom control and conflict resolution, that will be introduced as necessitated by the needs of IBWCA students.

      1. Meeting students where they are socially, culturally and academically and then moving them to higher and more intensive academic levels supported by incorporating instructional themes such as the avoidance of threat, meaningful and relevant content, learning style choices, sufficient time to assimilate content, an enriched learning environment, student-to-student collaboration, and immediate feedback;
      2. Designing methodologies to confirm IBWCA's belief that all children can learn and that it is incumbent on educators to make that learning happen;
      3. Self-learning projects that are student or teacher initiated, conducted first in-school and later, based on student maturity, conducted out-of-school;
      4. A holistic paradigm that allows students to experience how one set of basic skills directly relates to other basic skills, i.e., reading to mathematics, geography to social sciences, mathematics to science, culture to history; and how all these relate to being educated in general;
      5. Main streaming students with disabilities to the extent feasible so as to assure that all students' learning is administered equally and with care; and
      6. Periodic and unannounced classroom visitations to monitor and upgrade teacher performance.

Assessment System

In addition to instruction focused on learner achievement of the specified performance objectives, competency-based education requires assessment of student progress. A clear distinction is made between the standardized administration of quarterly grade level assessments will be used to evaluate, intervene, and guide student progress in the K through 6 classrooms. These IBWCA-developed assessments, will serve as an early warning process for determining student success and alert faculty and school administrators where reinforcement, intervention or remediation may be needed.

Various psychometric instruments, e.g., the California Achievement Test, IBWCA will be used to measure the degree to which its students exhibit the cultural, historical and social knowledge and sensitivities (sensibilities) the curriculum fosters based on national norms. The Ohio Proficiency Test program will be used to assess performance based on the state-wide norms. In both instances, IBWCA expects students to perform at or above the 75th percentile. To assess the degree to which students are satisfactorily assimilating the IBWCA infused curriculum, IBWCA has developed several instrumentalities to assess . . .

      1. how well students (and parents) are apprehending IBWCA's curricular structure, teaching style and methodology and IBWCA-student-community-parent relations;
      2. how well students are comprehending the lessons, learning materials and related class materials and activities; and
      3. how well IBWCA is making progress in its overall development as a creative and responsive learning process; and
      4. how well IBWCA has met its planned and comprehensive continuum of educational services for all students and particularly for special population students as required by rule 3301-51-04 and in accordance with the procedural safeguards outlined in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Part B and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Under this rubric is also included the assessment of IBWCA's ability to meet the needs of its under challenged, under achieving students as well as its anticipated exceptional or gifted students.

The frequent conduct of structured assessments of students in general and particularly those students who desire to leave the program will facilitate their transition back into the Akron Public School System or into some other public school district. 

IBWCA'S choice of methods to assess pupil progress is based on the following five beliefs about assessment:

      1. In order to have a complete picture of a student's growth, different types of assessments must be used. Assessments should focus on an individual student's growth towards a proficiency standard rather than comparing a student's performance against other students;
      2. There should be a close relationship between a desired student outcome and the means used to assess it;
      3. Assessing what students do with knowledge is as important as assessing what knowledge they have;
      4. Assessment should promote and support reflection and self-evaluation on the part of students, staff, parents and IBWCA; and
      5. Assessment, intervention and evaluation will proceed along the lines defined by MEO-SERRC in its "Combined Initiative Training: Assessment and Intervention" manual:

Intervention-Based Assessment (IBA) is a collaborative, problem-solving process which focuses upon a specific concern that affects the learner's educational progress within a learning environment. Individuals involved in this ongoing process include the learner, the learner's family and educators, who mutually define and analyze the concernts), develop measurable goals, and design and implement interventions while monitoring the effectiveness of these through the use of performance data.

Intervention-Based Multifactored Evaluation (IBMFE) extends the IBA process and is used exclusively for students suspected of having a disability. A disability, as defined by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), exists when the nature and intensity of the interventions constitute a need for specially designed instruction without which the student's performance would be adversely affected.

IBWCA will consult with MEO-SERRC (Mid-Eastern Ohio-Special Education Regional Resource Center) for advice on service delivery and for recommendations of validated and reliable assessment and evaluation tools and procedures for its special education students.

IBWCA will use with students a variety of performance-based assessment tools such as portfolios, demonstrations, and pedormance tasks. IBWCA will also use standardized tests that compare individual student progress to state stanclards. These standardized proficiency tests are also intended to report the proportion of students at the Ida B. Wells Community Academy who have reached (or exceeded) the state proficiency standards in math, reading, writing, science, and social studies.

Tools for Assessment.

Portfolios will provide one perspective for assessing student growth. A portfolio is a daily or weekly collection of representative work. Reading, writing, speaking portfolios, for example, will contain results of student performance on a variety of assessments in writing, reading, and speaking. Scoring ranges will be developed and staff will receive training on using these agreed upon scoring ranges. Student reflection will be an integral part of the portfolio. In addition, the portfolios will serve as one tool that lets teachers determine how well they meet IBWCA-adopted proficiency targets, say, in one language English and becoming semi-fluent in a second language Kiswahili. 

Demonstrations provide another means for assessing student growth. Demonstrations provide another means for assessing student growth. Demonstrations will, for example, be a part of a Reading/Writing/Speaking Portfolio or to assess proficiency in mathematics. The key element will be students demonstrating their attainment of specified standards to a 
panel of IBWCA staff, parents et al. These standards or desired outcomes will be based on the Ohio state-mandated curricular proficiency standards.

Performance represents a set of tasks that are assigned as a means of assessing students growth. These tasks will be based in combined curricular areas of language arts and social sciences but not exclusively so. Teachers will identify a number of performance goals that reflect content covered during the six-week grading period, semester or school year. Once identified, these goals will be defined and scoring methodologies devised so that the mastery of learning outcomes can be specifically determined. These goals will be designed to measure what students know and how well they apply what they know.

IBWCA's faculty as a group or individually will assess how well students can put into action what they have learned and experienced to construct, perform and carry out a meaningful service project designed to meet a community need within or without IBWCA. The task will demonstrate the student's ability to integrate several expected and desired social, educational or historical-cultural outcomes for students. A possible task could be stated as follows:
"Identify a community service opportunity to perform. As you prepare yourself to perform  the service, research, read and comprehend what others have done under similar circumstances that is related to the service you have chosen. Develop a written proposal that describes the service and that persuades others that what you intend to do is worthwhile. Provide the service. Finally, describe the process in writing as well as through another medium that can be video, music, speech, a song, art, poetry, or dance. You decide which medium (media) you want to use."
IBWCA will consider using the California Aptitude Test (CAT); the Student Attitude Measure (SAM) to measure student motivation, student academic self-confidence, student sense of control over performance, and student sense of instructional mastery and the Iowa Test of Basic Skills (ITBS). To assess and compare student progress to a proficiency standard will also be used. These tests include the Ohio Proficiency Test (OPT) that measure reading, writing, and math, citizenship (social studies) and science proficiency in the 4th grade. As grade levels are added, IBWCA will use the 6th grade proficiency test.

Summer Extended Education Program

Beginning in Summer 2000, the Ida B. Wells Community Academy will require its students to attend its extended education program of 6 weeks duration. This extended year "summer program" will accomplish three educational objectives: 

      1. It will allow IBWCA to assure its students and their parents that the education received will afford each student a quality education and insure against students having to be retained because of their not being able to meet IBWCA's quality standards; 
      2. It will allow IBWCA to offer remediation services to student who fails to attain IBWCA determined scores on its internally developed assessment instrument or on three or more of the five state mandated proficiency tests.
      3. It will allow IBWCA to infuse more non-traditional learning objectives into its curricular structure without jeopardizing required performance mandates.

Graduation Requirements

Not Applicable

Special Education

By June 15, 1999, policies and procedures for the education of children with disabilities which comply with ORC 3323 and PL 105-17, Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), will be adopted and implemented. The Ida B. Wells Community Academy will operate in accordance with these procedures for the duration of the contract.

Calendar and Schedule 

The Ida B. Wells Community Academy will open each school day morning at 7:30 AM and close at 5:00 PM. Elementary school students will not be allowed to enter the building before 8:15 AM at which time breakfast will be served to those who are eligible and/or have registered for these meals. At 8:45 the school day begins with the daily "Start of the School Day Program." This program consists of announcements, the singing of "Lift Ev'ry Voice and Sing," the IBWCA Pledge, and the "Recognition of the Ancestors Ceremony." At 9:00 AM students report to their classrooms.

Daily Class Schedule*

  7:30 - 5:00  School Opening and Closing Times
  8:15 - 8:30  Enter Building and Removal of Outerwear
  8:15 - 8:45  Breakfast Served after Attendance and Lunch Count
           8:45  "Start of the School Day" Program and Announcements
  9:00 - 10:00  Dismissal to Classrooms: All Grades
           (The optimal time for teaching math and reading is during the morning hours.*)
10:00 - 10:15  Kindergarten Recess
10:15 - 11:15  Kindergarten Classtime
11:15 - 11:30  Kindergarten Restroom, cleanup, etc
11:30 - 12:00  Kindergarten: Lunch / Recess
12:00 - 1:15  Kindergarten: Nap Time
  1:15 - 2:15  Kindergarten: Classtime
10:15 - 10:30  1st Grade: Recess
10:30 - 11:30  1st Grade: Classtime
11:30 - 11:45  1st Grade: Restroom, Cleanup, etc.
11:45 - 12:15  1st Grade: Lunch / Recess
12:15 - 12:45  Quiet Time
12:45 - 1:15    1st Grade: Classtime
10:30 - 10:45  2nd Grade: Recess
10:45 - 11:45  2nd Grade: Classtime
11:45 - 12:00  2nd Grade: Restroom, Cleanup, etc.
12:00 - 12:30  2nd Grade: Lunch / Recess
12:30 - 1:00  Quiet Time
  1:00 - 1:30  2nd Grade: Classtime
  1:30 - 2:00  2nd Grade: Classtime
  1:45 - 2:00  1st Grade: Recess
  2:00 - 2:15  2nd Grade: Recess
  2:15 - 2:30  Kindergarten: Recess
  2:30 - 3:10  Self-Directed Student Study Time: All Grades
  3:10  Announcements
  3:15  Dismissal of first bus students
  3:30  Dismissal of walkers & second bus students

*This daily schedule is subject to change.

The 1999 - 2000 School Calendar

 August 1999 

  2  Teacher Orientation Begins 
11  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
16  Parent Orientation Begins 
19  Board of Governors Meeting:  6:00pm* 
25  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
30  First Day of School -- Student Orientation Begins: 

 September 

  6  Labor Day:  No School 
  8  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
  9  Board of Governors Meeting:  6:00pm* 
13 - 17  Student Assessments 
22  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
30  Board of Governors Meeting:  6:00pm* 

 October 

  6  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
20  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
21  Board of Governors Meeting:  6:00pm* 

 November 

  3  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
  8  End of 1st Qtr.:  Report Cards Sent Home 
11  Board of Governors Meeting:  6:00pm* 
11  Veterans' Day (Armistice Day)
12  Parent/Teacher Conferences:  No School 
17  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
25 - 26  Thanksgiving Day Recess:  No School 

 December 

  1  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
  2  Board of Governors Meeting:  6:00pm* 
15  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
20 - January 3, 2000  Winter Break 
25  Christmas Day 
26 - January  Kwanzaa Celebration
31 - Eve of the New Millenium 

 January 2000 

  1  First Day of the New Millenium 
  3  Return To School 
  5  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
  6  Board of Governors Meeting:  6:00pm* 
17  Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday 
19  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
27  Board of Governors Meeting:  6:00pm* 
28  End of 2nd Qtr.:  Report Cards Sent Home 

 February 

  2  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
  7  Teacher In-Service:  No School 
12  Frederick Douglass Birthday 
16  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
17  Board of Governors Meeting:  6:00pm* 
23  W.E.B. DuBois Birthday 

 March 

  1  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
  9  Board of Governors Meeting:  6:00pm* 
15  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
20 - 24 Spring Break 
29  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
30  Board of Governors Meeting:  6:00pm* 

 April 

  4  Easter Sunday
10  End of 3rd Qtr.:  Report Cards Sent Home 
12  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
14  Parent/Teacher Conferences:  No School 
20  Board of Governors Meeting:  6:00pm* 
26  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 

 May

  1  May Day
  9  Mother's Day
10  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
11  Board of Governors Meeting:  6:00pm* 
15 - 19  Student Assessments 
19  Malcolm X (el-Hajj Malik el-Shabazz) Birthday 
24  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
31  Memorial Day 

 June 

  1  Board of Governors Meeting:  6:00pm* 
  7  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
15  End of 4th Qtr.:  Report Cards Sent Home 
16  Field Day/School Picnic:  Last Day of School 
20  Father's Day
26  Summer Enrichment Program Start 

 July 

  4  Independence Day 
16  Ida B. Wells-Barnett Birthday 

 August 

  3  Summer Enrichment Program Ends 
10  Teacher Orientation Begins 
11  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
16  Parent Orientation Begins 
19  Board of Governors Meeting:  6:00pm* 
25  Advisory Board Meeting:  6:00pm* 
30  Student Orientation Begins: 

 September 

  4  Labor Day:  No School 
  5  First Day of School 

*Both Advisory Board and Board of Governors Meeting times are subject to change. 
 


 

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