HISD’s Barbara Jordan High School for Careers (5800 Eastex Freeway, 77026) has received a national High Schools That Work Gold Award for Improved Implementation, based on the progress of local school leaders and teachers in improving school practices. The award was presented by Dave Spence, President of the Southern Regional Education Board, at the annual High Schools That Work Staff Development Conference in Atlanta on Wednesday, July 8.
Spence praised the school for its achievement, pointing out that it takes dedication and hard work on the part of state, district and school leaders and teachers to make progress in preparing students for college and careers in an increasingly competitive world. He presented the award before an audience of more than 6,000 educators from across the nation.
The school is one of only ten high schools in the nation receiving the HSTW Gold Award for Improved Implementation in 2009. To earn this recognition, the school made large improvements in their implementation of the HSTW design. These schools also had 50 percent or more of students meet at least one of the readiness goals on the 2008 HSTW Assessment and either met the Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) criteria of the federal No Child Left Behind Act or had a graduation rate of 85 percent or higher.
“This school has shown what can be accomplished to raise student achievement by deeply implementing the High Schools That Work model for strengthening curriculum and instruction,” said Gene Bottoms, Senior Vice President of SREB and founder of HSTW. “The school illustrates the spirit of change and the gains in performance that High Schools That Work advocates and supports through assessment, staff development and technical assistance.”
Barbara Jordon Principal Rever Givens said, “It is an honor to receive the HSTW Gold Award. I attribute my campuses’ success to the dedication and commitment of the faculty, as well as to the outstanding Jordan High School students whose parents have set educational goals and who provide the support and parental guidance to ensure that the campus is successful in preparing students for graduation.”
More than 1,100 high schools in 32 states participate in the HSTW school improvement initiative, which is based on the premise that most students can master rigorous academic and career/technical studies if school leaders and teachers create a school environment that is motivational, challenging and supportive. The HSTW initiative is the nation’s first large-scale effort to engage state, district and school leaders in partnership with teachers, students, parents and the community to equip all students with the knowledge and skills needed to graduate from high school and succeed in college and the workplace.