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EdisonLearning Advances “Don’t Let Them Drop” Campaign at the National Dropout Prevention Conference

National Dropout Prevention Center Conference Oct. 2 - 5, 2016

Beginning this upcoming weekend, EdisonLearning will be raising awareness among the nation’s foremost education leaders in the area of dropout prevention and recovery at the National Dropout Prevention Center’s annual conference in Detroit.  Thom Jackson, who serves on the Center’s Board of Directors, will be joined by members of EdisonLearning’s Achievement and Business Development teams to discuss with public school administrators our successful Bridgescape Learning Academies, and the innovative new project-based curriculum that has enhanced our Alternative Education solution.

EdisonLearning’s booth at the conference, which runs from October 1-5, will include the “Don’t Let Them Drop” 3D art installation that visually highlights the sense of urgency on the personal and societal costs of the national drop out crisis, and also depicts that during this current school year – approximately 800,000 young people will drop out of high school – an average of 4,000 every school day – ONE every 90 seconds.

In addition, Natalie Williams of EdisonLearning will be joined by Eric Davis of Global Learning Models, and Holly Brzycki the Capital Area Intermediate Unit in a conference session on October 3, entitled: “Engaging Non-Traditional Students Through Project-Based Learning.”  This session will provide attendees with information about a dynamic and interactive project-based curriculum to transform the non-traditional learner experience, which has been developed by EdisonLearning, Global Learning Models, and the CAIU’s online program - CAOLA. Attendees will also create a mini-mastery project to better comprehend the non-traditional student’s attainment of critical thinking and analytical skills that lead to sustained success.

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Bridgescape Learning Academy Opens September 20 to Help Dayton Students Earn Their High School Diploma

New Ohio-based Bridgescape Expands Program to More Students

Dayton, OH -- With the number one predictor of success in life being a high school diploma, the leading alternative learning program for students who are at risk of leaving school or have already left school, opens to young people in Dayton on Tuesday, September 20.

The Bridgescape Learning Academy of Dayton, located at 3237 W. Siebenthaler Avenue, will provide an effective and personalized educational option for those students who want to earn a standard high school diploma.

During the recently concluded school year, more than 2,000 high school dropouts and at risk students attended Bridgescape Learning Academies in Chicago, Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati, Norfolk, Durham, and Bridgeton, NJ.

Understanding that personal issues and challenges may have interfered with a student’s academic progress, Bridgescape offers a flexible program so students can attend on-site classes in the morning, afternoon or evening to suit their needs.

Unlike a traditional school setting, the Bridgescape program is a blend of one-on-one and group instruction, infused with interactive online offerings specifically tailored for each individual student.  Each Academy is staffed with on-site education teams to assist students in their daily studies. Two-thirds of the student’s instruction is provided by EdisonLearning’s eCourses and eSchoolware.

Since its inception in 2010, Bridgescape has awarded diplomas to 2,000 at-risk and dropped-out high school students, and helped prepare them to enter college or receive the necessary credentials to get a job upon graduation.

Eighty-two percent (82%) of students, who enroll in Bridgescape, complete the program and earn their diploma - which is higher than the national graduation rate for all schools.

Dayton-area students interested in learning more about Bridgescape should visit the website at: www.bridgescape.com; or call an enrollment counselor directly at 937-639-3192.

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New Columbus Bridgescape Location

Bridgescape Learning Academy - Columbus

Columbus, OH -- The Road to Success / Bridgescape Learning Academy received its new signage yesterday.  The school is now located at 3377 Cleveland Avenue in Columbus, to provide an effective and personalized educational option for those students who want to earn a standard high school diploma.  The other Bridgescape Learning Academy in Columbus – Capital High School – is still located at 640 Harrisburg Pike.

With the number one predictor of success in life being a high school diploma, the leading alternative learning program for students who are at risk of leaving school or have already left school, is relocating one of its two area locations to better serve the young people of Columbus.

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'Kids don't hate math; they hate being frustrated'

Helping Students Succeed at Math

Entering high school math can bring up anxiety for both the student and the parent. Algebra, geometry, trigonometry — the course titles are the same, but believe it or not, the way these classes are now taught in school can look a lot different from what you might remember. Here are a few ways to prepare yourself — and, more importantly, your student — for a successful school year:

The best way to support your student as he transitions to these upper-level math courses is to keep an open dialogue with him about it.

"When Common Core came in, it shifted the focus to include an understanding of everything," said Amy Lee Kinder, who has worked as a math specialist at the Bridgescape Academy in Humboldt Park. "It's more about the process to get there. That's very foreign to how people were taught in the past. It's more about investigative learning and students going through a scenario and understanding a concept completely." 

Kinder said students are now asked, "Why do you think that?" and, "Where does that come from?" They are required to explain how they came to the answer, instead of just spitting out a number.

A great way to prepare your student for the classroom is by asking the same types of questions at home.

"Question, question, question," Kinder said. "Stay involved, as hard as it may be. From the teacher's perspective, it takes a team of people to assist these kids, and support outside the classroom is huge."

If your student is nervous about a new math class, try building up his confidence by revisiting basic concepts, such as addition, subtraction and fractions.

"The issues kids face in algebra aren't necessarily about algebra, but a lack of understanding about what a fraction is — things that precede that higher-level class," said Mark Kriston, owner of two Mathnasium learning centers in Chicago.

It's always good to know when to ask for help. And with more difficult courses that build upon previous concepts, it's probably best for your student to get help sooner, rather than later, if he needs it.

"We don't get calls for tutoring until October or November," Reber said. "That's usually when they've had their first hard test."

But Kinder, who also works as a private math tutor, cautioned: "Once a kid gets behind, it's way harder for them to get caught up." She suggests going over the syllabus with your child as soon as school starts. She said students should be presented with a calendar of what's going to be expected of the class; some teachers will post this information online.

"The more proactive parents can be about getting involved, the better," she said.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/lifestyles/parenting/sc-back-to-school-math-family-0830-20160824-story.html

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Thom Jackson Addresses Ohio Bridgescape Team – Announces a new 9th Core Value

The following are Thom Jackson’s remarks to the Ohio Bridgescape educators on August 3 in Columbus.

 

This morning marks the beginning of the new school year.  Wow!  Think about that for a moment...a new school year. 

I have not known what that means as a teacher, counselor or instructional leader. I do remember what it meant as a student.  

For much of my primary and secondary education, a new school year meant three words:  Breakfast and Lunch.  It meant that I could get two regular meals each day, which I saw as the real reward for showing up.  What happened in between -- classes, quizzes, tests and homework, well that was a necessary by-product until...until wonderfully committed teachers, like you, helped me to realize that I had it backwards.  

The best meals were served over Shakespeare, Emerson and Frost.  Following the drinking gourd was not just a song, but a lens into the strength, character and culture of a people and a nation that really is pregnant with opportunity and potential. Conquering Polynomials and understanding Pythagorean built mental toughness. 

Many of the students with whom you will work will not have such an idyllic view.  Some have failed of their own volition; others have frankly failed because they have been failed. All, however, will look to each of you to give them one thing...hope – an enduring belief that they are in the right place --- the place where they can turn things around, where someone believes in their innate ability to learn.  

I have often said that "Education is the hardest job you'll ever love."  It is hard not just because our country has yet to truly commit the resources necessary to ensure educational equity regardless of a child's socioeconomic circumstances.   It is hard not just because of the adult agendas that generate polices which frustrate academic progress and perpetuate dropout factories in our communities.

It is hard because of the cumulative effect of each of these and the sheer battle ground of issues our children face even before they walk through our doors:  personal safety, extreme poverty, verbal, physical and emotional abuse, and failed schools.

These are the issues our students carry through our doors.  They are the issues that only a profound sense of hope can help them overcome.  And so, they look to you....to each of you. 

As I thought about my remarks today, it occurred to me that your job not only underscores the importance of our 8 Core Values, but actually exposes their incompleteness.  Think about it. As you succeed in creating an environment of hope, our students learn how to endure, how to work from “I can't” to “I can”.  In progressing from drop out to drop in to graduate, they not only learn hope, they become resilient. 

Resilience is the ability to overcome and ultimately be strengthened by life’s challenges.  My great grandmother used to say, "Trouble don't come all ways, but it always comes."  Each day during this new year, you will help our students develop the academic tools that will become the life skills they will need to overcome many and varied challenges they will face throughout their lives. 

Therefore, I find it no better setting than today, here in Columbus, to announce a 9th Core Value.  Resilience: The ability to overcome and ultimately be strengthened by life’s challenges.

When we announced our 8 Core Values nearly a generation ago, we recognized that indelible link between character and education, or as Aristotle said:  "Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all."

Each day, in our Bridgescape Learning Academies across the country, we are educating mind and heart, teaching and building grit and determination -- helping our students to mature into strong, resilient adults.  Indeed, even as we teach them, we, too, become more resilient.

As you plan and prepare for the new school year, I ask that you think intentionally about this new core value.  Indeed, you may conclude, even as I did, that it is not only an appropriate Core Value, but that it is the end product of successfully teach its 8 predecessors. 

Thank you for your time, and in advance, I thank each of you personally for what you will do for our students throughout this new year. 

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