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Exciting news from the BCP Schools: City Springs Elementary/Middle School,
Govans Elementary School, Hampstead Hill Academy and Wolfe Street Academy.

BCP April 2016 Newsletter
In this issue:
"Muriel Berkeley Innovation Fund" Honors BCP Founder
Muriel Berkeley
berkeley
BCP will celebrate Founder Muriel Berkeley's 70th birthday and the 20th anniversary of her founding of the Baltimore Curriculum Project at the "Are You Smarter than a BCP 5th Grader?" fundraiser on April 21, 2016.

Dr. Berkeley has asked that friends and colleagues recognize this milestone by attending the event and making a contribution to the Muriel Berkeley Innovation Fund, an endowment that will support special projects and pilot programs in BCP's neighborhood charter schools.

While basic expenses for our schools and our administration are provided by Baltimore City Public Schools, innovation projects and programs require about $50,000 - $100,000 per year and the Fund would allow BCP to concentrate its efforts on growing these ideas and matching fund opportunities.

As Dr. Berkeley has said, "My seventy year supply of memories is filled with children and teachers energized by the thrill of skill building and learning.  New tools such as Direct Instruction, CHAMPS, Core Knowledge, NWEA assessments, Restorative Practices and Singapore math are but a few of the innovations that have made our schools successful.  But we need to keep the ideas flowing and accessible to our schools and all children in Baltimore."

The Muriel Berkeley Innovation Fund will ensure that we have the necessary funds to provide our schools with the best tools available.  Please join us in continuing the education legacy of Muriel Berkeley. 

We look forward to welcoming you on April 21st when we honor Dr. Berkeley for her outstanding contributions.

Contributions to the Muriel Berkeley Innovation Fund may be made online at:

Purchase tickets for "Are You Smarter than a BCP 5th Grader?" at: areyousmarter2016.eventbrite.com
BCP Offers DI as a Solution for Struggling Virginia Schools
virginia
BCP President Laura Doherty delivered a presentation on the effectiveness of Direct Instruction in turning around struggling schools at a recent forum in Richmond, Virginia. The story was featured in the Richmond-Time Dispatch:

"According to the Virginia Department of Education, 16 Henrico elementary schools missed the mark for state Standards of Learning test scores. The current English pass rate on the path to full accreditation is 75 percent...

"An interfaith coalition is offering an option for the schools that are struggling with reading scores. Richmonders Involved to Strengthen our Communities, RISC, has proposed introducing direct instruction at those elementary schools...

"At a recent forum at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Richmond, Laura Doherty, president and CEO of the Baltimore Curriculum Project, gave a presentation on direct instruction to RISC and the public.

"The Baltimore Curriculum Project, founded in 1996, is a network of four charter schools. One of its facilities, City Springs Elementary/Middle School, located in an impoverished area, was the subject of a documentary, "Battle of City Springs" due to its initial problems and its conversion to direct instruction.

"While on the direct instruction format, the school has more than 80 percent of its students reading on grade level, Doherty said. Between 2007 and 2010, the number of second-graders functioning on reading level increased from 10 percent to 75 percent, according to data from RISC."

galaxy
Recently, Ms. Glewwe's elementary students at City Springs Elementary/Middle have been enjoying a big boost in their daily reading, math and language instruction.

Each day, students get out their iPads and log on to Education Galaxy, a web-based program that provides online assessments and activities to make them more proficient in these core subjects.
 
Education Galaxy is an engaging program that provides daily assignments based on individual and class areas of study.  When students complete assignments, scores are sent to Ms. Glewwe, who then plans future classroom instruction and assignments based on the scores.

As students make progress, they have the opportunity to play learning games and earn rewards that make the school day that much more fun.  Ms. Glewwe's kids have really enjoyed Education Galaxy. Best of all, it's helping prepare them for the upcoming PARCC assessment. Assignments and questions are aligned with the Common Core State Standards and provide a highly-engaging way for students to master these important skills.
 
Learn more about Education Galaxy at: http://educationgalaxy.com/student_engagement

Summer Funding Collaborative Supports Programs at Govans and Wolfe Street Academy
summer
BCP would like to thank the Baltimore Summer Funding Collaborative for providing support for Summer programs at Govans Elementary and Wolfe Street Academy.

Generous grants from the Abell Foundation, Family League of Baltimore and The Annie E. Casey Foundation will support a STEM-focused program at Govans.

The Govans program will provide 90 K-5 students with instruction in reading, writing, STEM, and art, four days a week from 8:00am - 1:00pm. Students will also enjoy a healthy breakfast and lunch, recess, field trips and Restorative Circles.

A generous grant from The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation will support the program at Wolfe Street Academy, which will focus on literacy, math, science and social studies. Enrichment activities will include physical education, fine arts, music, agriculture and weekly field trips. Students will also enjoy a healthy lunch and breakfast.
Hands-On Learning at Hampstead Hill Academy
brains
HHA 7th Graders hold real human brains
A group of doctoral candidates from the University of Maryland School of Medicine's Graduate Program in Neuroscience recently provided Hampstead Hill Academy seventh graders with a unique hands-on learning opportunity.

HHA students learned about a variety of high tech equipment that measures neurological functioning and had the opportunity to hold real human brains.

In April, students will explore the excretory, endocrine and nervous systems, and will study how disease affects the human body.

Students are looking forward to the culminating frog dissection lab that will take place in May.

To learn more about the University of Maryland School of Medicine's Graduate Program in Neuroscience visit: http://lifesciences.umaryland.edu/neuroscience/
cs

David Hornbeck's March 14th article in the Philadelphia Public School Notebook illustrates how the Community School Strategy has effectively supported student success in high-poverty schools around the country.

"Outstanding performance confirms the strategy's effectiveness. At the school level, no one has done it better than a neighborhood school, Wolfe Street Academy, in Baltimore City, one of 54 community schools in the city. It has a 96 percent poverty level, and 80 percent of its students speak a language other than English at home. Ten years ago when the school adopted the Community School Strategy, it ranked 77th among Baltimore's 125 elementary schools in academic performance. Last year, it was second, trailing only one of the most affluent schools in the city."

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