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Charlotte Secondary School

This is Part VI in a series dedicated to National Charter Schools Week.

The staff at Charlotte Secondary School(CSS) in North Carolina just seems to get it.

They understand that being charter school educators gives them a responsibility to innovate and find the best possible methods of improving student learning and mastery of material.

Acting on this responsibility (and because they have the bureaucratic freedom to do so), teachers are implementing a digital learning pilot program, particularly in mathematics.

The school’s algebra and geometry teacher currently supplements regular lessons with content delivered via mobile and online devices that students can access at school or at home. Students requiring extra time and instruction, a concept not all that foreign to subjects such as algebra and geometry, can also stop, start and review learning material at their own pace.

Still in the pilot stage and powered by the Georgia-based N2N Services Inc., CSS educators tell CER that parents are able to look over their kid’s shoulder since they can access online content at home, and can make comments to teachers based on what’s being taught and how students are doing.

With teacher schedules being jam-packed during the school year, teachers are looking forward to the summer as an opportunity to develop and review the program further.

In addition to the digital learning program, the founding mission of CSS also emphasizes a comprehensive education that emphasizes civic mindedness and critical thinking to solve ‘real world’ issues.

After opening as a middle school in 2007, CSS has been working since 2013 to expand its high school offering following its recognition as a ‘School of Distinction.’ By the fall of 2015, CSS administrators fully expect to be serving approximately 560 students in grades 6-12.

Schools like CSS provide tangible examples that innovation truly starts in the classroom, and exciting things can happen when dedicated teachers are given autonomy.


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