About The Project
We Are Ed! Birmingham Community Forum
As a result of 2007's community visioning program Yes We Can! Birmingham, and our ongoing communication with members of the community, the Birmingham Education Foundation has developed four strands, or areas of focus, to accomplish the goals of helping to improve the Birmingham City School experience for students and parents. Specifically, we expect these programs to aid in increasing the cohort graduation rate from 55% to 70% by 2013, and then to 80% by 2016. This is how we are translating the community’s words into action.
Strand 1: Parental Involvement
BEF in partnership with the BCS Family Involvement Department and the Birmingham Council of PTAs is creating a network of classes called Birmingham Parent University, a parent engagement initiative that creates empowering experiences in a variety of settings to address student needs. Course offerings will fall under the following focus areas:
Strand 2: College- and Career-Focused High Schools
Following the model advocated and supported by the National Academy Foundation, BEF and BCS are implementing a series of Career Academies in each of the BCS high schools. These Academies will combine academic and career-technical education to prepare high school students to be career and college ready, by creating a cross-curriculum program of instruction that focuses on one of 6 themes:
Strand 3: Professional Development for School Leaders
BEF is supporting BCS administrators as they design and implement Professional Learning Communities in each of the BCS schools and in various other professional areas. PLCs are a model of management that allows for regular, timely and focused response to data on teaching and learning issues. These responses help teachers and school personnel improve educational outcomes in more immediate ways than relying on annual AYP data and state testing reports.
Strand 4: Pre- Advanced Placement Initiative
BEF and BCS, in partnership with A+ College Ready and Laying the Foundation, are equipping teachers with the resources and skills necessary to instill a more rigorous curriculum in BCS middle schools. As a result, our students will have the benefit of being better prepared to perform well in advanced courses and on the AP and ACT exams in high school.