The Network Reunites in Georgetown

We heard from Urban Schools Network (USN) teams that this summer's preconference was a success. Since USN teams got so much out of the event (see The USN Digs In At Long Beach) and we had so much fun, we decided to do it again! This time we'll reunite on the east coast at the historic Georgetown University campus in Washington, D.C., November 16-17. We're calling it the Urban Schools Network Fall Regional Meeting. The theme is "Extending Our Network."

USN teams have expressed the ever present concerns of lack of time, funding, and support. Moreover, this summer many teams voiced many questions including how to: connect to broader reform initiatives, create sustainable programs that meet higher standards, get community involvement, and identify resources. In response to these questions, we are offering team time, workshops, and presentations that will help teams meet these challenges.

NCRVE field consultants Lola Jackson and Marilyn Raby, fellows, and USN staff will work with teams to strengthen team efforts and increase team viability. According to Raby, teams' chances of longevity increase when teams "view themselves as components of the total delivery system in their district or institution, and not a stand alone project with little administrative or funding support."

According to Network Director, Erika Nielsen Andrew, " school reform of this scope and magnitude depends on the successful collaboration of the school community including teachers, administrators, parents, students, community organizations, and businesses." Network expansion depends on the success of these collaborations. Therefore, the regional meeting workshops and presentations are designed with this focus in mind and will cover the following topics:

These workshops, along with valuable team time and cross-team sharing, will give teams necessary information on how to expand team efforts school-, district-, city-, or statewide, and/or connect teams with a national initiative. Other sessions will focus on curriculum integration, assessment, work-based learning, scheduling, and more. Two special features on Saturday evening are team resource sharing time at the reception and a viewing of the teleconference video shown at the summer preconference called, High School Block Scheduling: An Introduction, produced by the University of Virginia, and featuring Professor Robert Lynn Canady.

We hope your team will join us. It will certainly be a packed but productive day and a half. If your team does decide to come, we encourage you to consider the following:

  1. Who do we need to invite/ bring to Georgetown? What key players do we need involved to move our efforts school-wide? (the principal, business partners, a district or state representative)
  2. What do we have to share with other teams? What do we want to find out from other teams?
  3. What can we bring that shows evidence of our progress/process? (planning documents, student work, curriculum samples, partnership agreements, evaluation reports, etc.)

The cost to attend the Regional Meeting is $56 per person. The regististration fee includes: all of described workshops, consulting from NCRVE Fellows, take-home materials, meals, coffee breaks, and an informal reception. Registration forms were sent out mid September, and the deadline to register is October 18. If you need a form or have questions please call us at 800-(old phone deleted). We are always here to help. Hope to see your team real soon!



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