Pivot Charter School has been reviewing and piloting curriculum for grades Tk-8th over the past year. We are excited to announce that the final selections have been made for the upcoming school year.
Lindsey Vining, Systems and Accountability Coordinator, and Meghan Coffey, Pivot North Bay EC and Curriculum Coordinator, began researching curriculum options in October, 2017. Pivot Board members Dr. Tom Halvorsen and Dr. Kevin Harrigan, both retired school superintendents, made up the curriculum selection subcommittee and provided guidance to Ms. Vining and Ms. Coffey. “Their years of experience in education and administration provided us with a good starting point, as well as an overview of the specific needs of our Pivot students and teachers,” Ms. Vining said.
According to Ms. Coffey, “We looked into fifteen different options for curriculum. We kept the students in mind, as it is crucial to offer curriculum that is comprehensive, up to date and easy to navigate”. They also considered how appropriate the material was for each grade level and whether it best suited the needs of Pivot’s unique and diverse student population. “For example, a student who consistently works on their assignments virtually must be able to follow along with the lessons just as easily as a student who comes into the resource center regularly,” Ms. Coffey said.
After a careful review process, which involved a scoring system, a thorough review by selected teachers, staff, parents and students, as well as evaluation by the Board subcommittee, the final selections were made.
The elementary grades will be using Accelerate Education, which is the same program that was piloted to certain students during this past school year. Ms. Vining notes that “Accelerate offers more opportunities for doing work both online and offline. It is crucial in the elementary grades that students practice handwriting, for example, and this program offers those opportunities.”
The middle school will use the Edmentum curriculum, which Pivot has been using for high school elective courses. This curriculum offers all of the middle school core courses (Language Arts, Math, Science and Social Studies) in what Coffey describes as “a modern interface with interactive lessons”. She notes that “students can participate virtually, so they are not just offered a lesson and a quiz, but there is additional online practice and activities embedded in each unit.”. In addition to the core classes and Physical Education logs, elective courses will be offered to middle schoolers through the Edmentum curriculum, such as Fashion Design, Music Appreciation, and Nutrition and Wellness.
For Pivot high schoolers, the curriculum will remain the same. Students will learn with Apex for their core classes and Edmentum as the supplement for elective courses. Apex, however, will be updating their platform, so there will be a new “look and feel” to the curriculum. According to Ms. Vining, “the interface and content are going to include more current, relevant material and have a more modern overall look, which will enhance the student experience while working online.”
For all grade levels, Pivot will be continue implementing i-Ready for Reading and Math assessment and instruction to boost students’ core skills. This program was piloted over the past year with great success and accolades from parents and students alike.
“As Pivot grows and expands, it is important that we keep our curriculum current and relevant to our students”, Ms. Vining noted. “We want to ensure that we are setting our students up for success both in and out of school, and we are confident that these curriculum selections will enhance their overall educational experience.”