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CDD Digest

CDD Update - Feb. 7, 2020

Last digest:

We shared information about the five models of school boundaries, magnet placements and school structures that were presented to the Board and discussed as part of the community listening and info sessions.

What’s new:

Key points: This week we’re going to talk more about three parts of the Jan. 28 presentation to the Board on the CDD: high school boundaries, Special Education, and Career Technical Education (CTE). To learn more, we encourage you to watch the presentation.

  • High school boundaries haven’t been previously discussed as the original boundary studies focused on grades K-8. This is an early draft to make sure the CDD addresses all grade levels, K-12.
  • For Special Education, the goal remains a more inclusive learning experience for students where they can receive needed services in their community school whenever possible.
  • And for CTE, our hope is to create centralized programming at two schools that prepare students with the skills and education necessary to succeed in whatever they take on after high school.

More info: As we’ve said before, the CDD is about more than just the five models of school boundaries. It’s a holistic look at how we can make improvements to better serve students by focusing on academics, equity and sustainability.

The draft high school boundaries are meant to support those goals. People rightfully have a lot of questions about them, and more information will be coming out soon. Again, they were draft boundaries developed to even out enrollment and support sustainability at all high schools, and we are grateful for continuing community feedback.

In MPS, about 17% of our students receive Special Education services. However, some schools have 30% of students receiving services while others only have 3%. The CDD provides an opportunity to make sure all community schools can provide Federal Setting I and II services for students. It also allows MPS to spread out Special Education enrollment districtwide so students have more inclusive learning opportunities. All community schools would offer:

  • Assessment and evaluation by a Special Education professional
  • Standards-based Individualized Education Program (IEP) planning
  • Specialized instruction and intensive interventions
  • Monitoring of student goals and objectives
  • Ongoing review on the use of interventions

For students receiving Federal Setting III Special Education services, magnet schools would provide highly specialized instruction in Emotional and Behavioral Disorder (EBD)/Social Emotional Learning (SEL), Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Coordinated Learning for Academic and Social Success (CLASS), and Developmental Cognitive Disabilities (DCD). Families of these students could participate in a Special Education lottery process that would provide more opportunities to attend a magnet school. In addition to the services listed above for community schools, magnet schools would offer:

  • Special Education staff trained in the magnet school focus and access to magnet focus materials
  • Opportunities for inclusion based on a student’s IEP
  • Highly specialized interventions based on a student’s IEP

Some community schools would also have Federal Setting III citywide classrooms. Students attending one of those programs would attend the class closest to their community school with services available to meet their IEPs. Students receiving Federal Setting IV services would continue to be served by River Bend and Harrison schools, with options to transition to magnet or community schools as they transition out of the Setting IV program.

MPS believes every student deserves access to rigorous and relevant CTE programs so they can achieve their goals and find success once they graduate. CTE opportunities mean MPS graduates are well prepared whether they head to college, a trades program or straight into the workforce.

Current programming in schools have not allowed for equitable access. The CDD allows MPS to offer centralized programming at two Tech Centers so more students have access to more programs. Both Tech Centers would provide high school students chances to explore their career interests while preparing them for success in the ever-evolving high-tech, high-skill local and global economy. An introductory career exploration option would still be at all high schools.

North High School would host a North Tech Center with career pathways in areas like Computer Science, Engineering and Robotics, and Web and Digital Communications. Roosevelt High School would host a South Tech Center with pathways in Automotive, Construction, Welding, Agriculture and Healthcare. At both locations, students would be able to gain industry certifications and college credit.

Many of these changes need to happen regardless of the CDD. However, the CDD allows MPS to be intentional in making changes that will provide all students with a well-rounded education.

What’s coming up:

Information from the Listening and Info Sessions, survey results and all of the feedback received will be compiled and reviewed before being presented to the Board later this spring. All of this will be reflected in the final CDD proposal sent to the Board on March 24, which will receive a vote on April 14.

Important conversations around budget will also be happening over the next few months at the same time as the CDD. Schools and district departments should receive their proposed school year 2020-21 budgets in the next two weeks. Since the majority of the CDD will be implemented in school year 2021-22 and beyond, most of it will not be included in next year’s budget, though there may be some funding for components of things like the academic plan. A final budget proposal will be sent to the Board in May for a vote in June.

How you can stay engaged:

Watch the Feb. 11 Board meeting on Channel 15 or online at mps.eduvision.tv. You can also see previous Board meetings and presentations both places.

Check out answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the CDD, give feedback, and stay up-to-date on the latest developments.

Attend meetings at your school and have conversations with your principal about the CDD.

Thank you for continuing to learn more and sharing your thoughts on the CDD.