Teaching & Learning

Teaching & Learning

ALH will continue to provide all mandatory Teaching and Learning Curriculum Content and Standards to ensure that all students have equitable access to rigorous instructions, instructional technology, and engagement through In-person, Virtual, or Hybrid Learning modalities.  ALH has a solid commitment to ensuring that every single student has the opportunity to succeed. ALH will provide synchronous learning and students are expected to participate and engage with remote synchronous learning.

School Schedules

Daily Synchronous Learning Model:

Week Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Group D (Remote)
Group C
1 Group A Group B Group A Group A Group B
2 Group A Group B Group B Group A Group B

 

Summary:

Three in-person groups, one remote:

Group A – General Education population, last name A-K

Group B – General Education population, last name L-Z

Group C – Special Populations (ENL, SWD) and students from families requesting daily in-school instruction (pending availability)

Group D – Seniors with permission, and students from families requesting daily out-of-school instruction

Groups A and B will rotate attendance on Wednesdays.

Group A Group B: In-person learning on two consistent days per week; synchronous remote learning for out-of-school days

Group C: In-person learning daily, working with assigned co-teachers

Group D: Synchronous remote learning, or asynchronous remote learning for certain admin-designated classes (e.g. dual enrollment classes)

Attendance and Chronic Absenteeism

Attendance for Instructional Purposes

  • Teachers will be required to take attendance in PowerSchool every period /class regardless of the student is learning remotely or in person.
  • Attendance will be taken for students of compulsory and non compulsory age.

 

Attendance for Reporting Purposes

  • ALH will ensure attendance of any school-age student of compulsory age is reported in SIRS. To date, the reporting of daily attendance.
  • ALH will ensure all reporting entities (staff and teachers) report attendance daily.
  • Students of compulsory age who were not in attendance in school in the current school year will be reported until they exceed compulsory school age, they are no longer enrolled in the school.
  • Students who drop out while still of compulsory school age will be kept in ALH’s school attendance until they exceed compulsory school age or enroll in another educational program.

Chronic Absenteeism

  • ALH’s Student Support Team will apply various interventions to address chronic absenteeism. Such interventions include but are not limited to:
    • Daily absentee phone calls
    • Student and parent/guardian meetings
      • Parent meetings will be virtual
    • Individualized improvement plans
    • Informational letters
    • Home visits
    • Collaboration with Social Services

Educational Neglect

  • Filing an educational neglect / PINS referral will be the last resort to address chronic absenteeism. See Chronic Absenteeism section to review the ALH’s attendance interventions.

Persons in Need of Supervision (PINS)

  • Filing an educational neglect / PINS referral will be the last resort to address chronic absenteeism. See Chronic Absenteeism section to review the ALH’s attendance interventions.

 

Units of Credit

RECEIVING CREDITS FOR A COURSE

Units of Credit are granted once a student successfully completes that course with a “70” or higher.

  • Partial credit units are not granted to a student who leaves ALH midyear or who transfers to another class midyear; however, a student who transfers to another class or who leaves the charter school has already completed a course, or has completed enough work to obtain a passing grade via the standards-based grading system and meets the ALH attendance policy, then a student may be awarded credit.
  • Students who choose to take an Honors or Advanced Placement (AP) level course (s) will be weighted in recognition of the extra effort needed to meet their requirements. Consequently, Honors courses will receive an additional 0.2 GPA points, and AP and college courses will receive an additional 0.5 GPA points.

Grading

Standards-Based Grading provides students with a score by standard for each assessment. Students will receive their overall course grades via eight Periods of Progress, or POPs, every five weeks. A final year long (Y1) grade will be calculated at the 8th POP.

Throughout the year, teachers will provide support to students based on targeted course standards through intervention periods, spiral review, and flex time (after school). Advanced students will be provided opportunities to enhance course grades by tutoring peers in structured learning environments and/or completing extension activities.

 

STANDARDS ARE:

  • Aligned to each course
  • Research & evidence based
  • Clear, understandable, & consistent
  • Aligned with college & career expectations
  • Based on rigorous content & the application of knowledge through higher-order thinking skills
  • Built upon the strengths and lessons of current state standards
  • Informed by top-performing countries to prepare all students for success in our global economy and society

 

Grading Guidelines

Period of Progress (POP) –      POP’s reflect cumulative standards covered throughout the year to date.

 

–      The grade at the end of the POP indicates the proficiency level that a student has demonstrated on the standards assessed.

Score vs. Grade –      Score: Number score (1-5) assigned to each standard on a given assessment based on demonstrated level of proficiency.

 

–      Grade: Converted scores on all cumulative standards assessed throughout the year to date. 

Levels of Performance –      In the standards-based grading system, a standard score, and subsequent POP grade, represents the proficiency level based on student demonstration of understanding of the knowledge, skills, and concepts in the subject area, as well as the student’s ability to apply that understanding to a variety of performance tasks.

 

5 – Mastery  4 – Proficient  3 – Partially Proficient  2 – Below  1 – Far below

Amelioration –      Students will track their own progress on each standard assessed for their courses; thus, students will know which standards they have mastered and which standards they need to improve knowledge and understanding of. Teachers will provide amelioration opportunities during class and flex time; scores will be updated accordingly.
Body of Evidence –      POP grades are based on a preponderance of evidence, typically 3-5 pieces of standards-aligned assessments, during the POP or cumulatively throughout the year.

–      If there is not sufficient evidence for making a decision about a standard score, the student will receive an “INC” as a placeholder. For example, a student has not submitted any assessments, or a student enrolled late in the POP.

Current Learning Trend –      Averaging by standard is the default grade in the system; however, teachers will use the student’s more recent, most consistent level of performance to determine a student’s POP grade. Teacher comments will support grades.
Interval Assessments –      Interval Assessments are cumulative and occur three times a year. These assessments are also scored by standard.  

–      Students will track interval standard proficiency and receive a “Regents Comparison Score” so students can track minimum standard obtainment

Assessment

At ALH, assessment means focusing on feedback instead of a score or grade.   Frequent assessment is a central component of our program. Assessments in every subject at ALH are used to adjust instruction and inform tutoring and enrichment programs in order to meet the needs of every student.

  • ALH uses the data from assessments on a daily, weekly, quarterly and annual basis. Assessments take many forms, including but not limited to, daily quizzes and homework, weekly tasks and projects, portfolios and presentations, unit assessments, interval assessment, Mock Regents exams and New York State and national norm referenced exams.
  • Student attendance and participation in the assessment program is essential in order to fully understand each student’s academic standing.
  • ALH will provide multiple opportunities and communication tools for parents/guardians to have their daughter’s most current assessment outcomes.

Bilingual Education and World Languages

  • The Director of Student Support Services as well as the Director of Advancement will work together to ensure that communications are sent to parents in their preferred language and mode of communication.

Instructional Units of Study must be provided to all English Language Learners (ELLs) based on their most recently measured English Language Proficiency, including Former ELLs.

  • An outline has been created to ensure that ELL students are receiving all needed Units of Study.
  • An additional support period (27 minutes) added during lunches to ensure support for students that tested Commanding.

Initial Identification of Potential ELLs

  • A process has been developed that outlines the steps in the process of identifying and testing potential ELL students. This includes the administration of the NYSITELL when necessary.

Units of Study for English as a New Language Programs

  • All ELL students will be provided with the required number of units of study based on their 2018-2019 NYSESLAT score.
  • Commanding students will continue to receive services if they are within two years of reaching that level.
  • All schedules are being audited to ensure compliance.

Communications and Language Access

  • Along with the Director of Advancement, the Director of Student Support Services will ensure that all communications sent home to parents of ELL students are in that parents preferred language. This will also include the use of translators for parent/teacher conferences and other meetings discussing their student’s needs.
  • A list of current ELL students has been created. This document will outline contact information and preferred method of contact. The document already indicates the student’s home language and current NYSESLAT level.

Professional Learning for Educators

  • Professional development opportunities have been added to the Summer and throughout the school year.
    • These include: Accommodations and Modifications, Co-Teaching, Content-Specific PDs, Think like a Reading Teacher (Support in teaching reading to students), and Family Engagement

Guiding Principles for Ensuring the Success of ELLs/MLLs

  • Through guidance from RBERN, teachers will be provided with the opportunity to receive instruction in best practices for teaching ELLs in the content areas.
  • Data from the NYSELSAT, NYSITELL, as well as diagnostic assessments such as STAR, will be utilized to inform all teachers of ELL student’s progress.
  • ALH will work with REBERN to implement a Family Engagement PD to ensure that teachers are aware of the importance of engaging ELL families.
  • ALH will work closely with REBERN to develop their Seal of Biliteracy program
  • ALH will continue to provide ELL students with rigorous instruction aligned with the Common Core State Standards and providing scaffolding as needed
  • Continued co-planning time for ELL teachers and co-teachers

Progress Monitoring

  • Lead ENL teacher working with REBER to develop SIFE Screener tool.
  • Local assessment such as STAR as well as teacher-developed assignments will provide the opportunity to progress monitor students over the course of the school year.
  • Specific student sheets will be developed to track language goals and progress

Educational Technology

  • Students will continue to be provided the opportunity to utilize technology throughout their learning. This includes working with Reading A to Z, typing, working with Google Apps for Education as well as teacher collaboration with REBERN to ensure students are utilizing new technologies available to them.

Students with Interrupted/Inconsistent Formal Education (SIFE)

  • Lead ENL teacher working with REBER to develop SIFE Screener tool.
  • Based on the screener tools, targeted interventions will be put into place to ensure SIFE student success.

Family Partnerships and Communication

  • Along with the Director of Advancement, the Director of Student Support Services will ensure that all communications sent home to parents of ELL students are in that parents preferred language. This will also include the use of translators for parent/teacher conferences and other meetings discussing their student’s needs.
  • Materials will also be provided on the school website in translated languages.

Culturally Responsive-Sustaining Education Framework

  • Professional development designed for staff to work through how to include culturally responsive teaching in the classroom.

Special Education

Albany Leadership consists of Students with Disabilities who participate in less restrictive programming such as consultant teacher services. These students will follow the same hybrid model as their general education peers, supported by their special education teachers.

Least Restrictive Environment (LRE)

  • Students with Special Education needs will continue to receive instruction in the least restrictive environment. This includes instruction for Special Education Students in classrooms with General Education Students whenever possible.

LRE Documentation

LRE documentation is contained within a student’s IEP recommendations. Albany Leadership offers co-taught general education classes. Parent voice is documented through the yearly CSE meetings.

IEP Implementation

  • All recommended services are supported through Special Education teachers as well as our School Social Workers. Teleconferencing for counseling sessions has been made available when necessary, however in-person counseling will be the priority. Resource Room will be provided as outlined in the student’s recommendations. Co-teachers will continue to be a part of any classrooms where they are required to be present due to the placement of Students with Disabilities in those general education classrooms.

 

Provision of Services

  • As stated above, Resource Room will continue to be provided daily to students whose recommendations require it if working in a hybrid setting or in-person. Resource Room will be conducted virtually for students in a hybrid setting or in a completely online setting. In addition, co-teachers will continue to be a part of any classrooms where they are required to be present due to the placement of Students with Disabilities in those general education classrooms. This may occur digitally for students in a hybrid or completely online setting.

Progress Monitoring

  • Special Education teachers will continue to progress monitor students’ IEP goals through the use of probes as well as data from in classroom instruction.
  • This information is documented in IEP direct.

Best Practice for Contingency Plans

  • The Director of Student Support Services will work with the district CSE chairperson to ensure that all students’ remote learning needs are met in the IEP if necessary.

Compensatory Services

  • The Director of Student Support Services will work with the district CSE chairperson to ensure that any additional services are added to the student’s IEP if necessary based on data collection.

IEP Implementation Documentation

  • Documentation of a student’s changing needs will be collected within a specified student’s document. This document will also include the instruction presented to students and any additional services that need to be provided beyond the student’s initial recommendations.
  • Ongoing process notes will be housed in IEP direct in the students IEP.

Child Find

Referral

  • Students will be placed in the Response to Intervention program prior to being referred for Special Education Services.

 

Initial Evaluation/Reevaluation

  • Initial Evaluation/Reevaluations are organized and conducted by the districts.

Eligibility Determination/Annual Review Meetings

  • While organized and conducted by the districts, the Director of Student Support Services is in consistent communication with the CSE to ensure necessary materials are provided.

Communication/Coordination

  • Communication with families will be documented on a weekly basis.
  • Progress reports will continue to be sent to students on every other POP basis.

Meaningful Outreach and Engagement with Parents of Students with Disabilities

  • Communication with families will be documented on a weekly basis.
  • Progress reports will continue to be sent to students on every other POP basis.
  • Assurances will be made so that all communication to parents of Students with Disabilities is sent in their home language.
  • Parents are encouraged to reach out to their student’s Special Education teacher/caseworker.

Procedural Safeguards and Prior Written Notice Requirements

  • This process is overseen by the students’ district of residence.

Accommodations and Modifications

  • Special Education teachers work with General Education co-teachers to ensure that modifications and accommodations are targeted to students’ specific needs.
  • These items will be documented in the student-specific document so as to be shared with parents as well as the CSE chairperson.

Supplementary Aids and Services

  • If a supplementary aid or service was needed for a student, the Director of Student Support Services would work with the district CSE chairperson to ensure they were provided.

Technology

  • Any students that are in need of assistive technology will be provided with such in concert with the district.

Academic Intervention Services

RtI is a school-wide intervention model addressing the academic and behavioral concerns of a student.  There are three tiers within the model.

(Academic)Tier One includes school-wide intervention using research-based curriculum and instruction in core classes. Student progress is monitored regularly. Students who struggle academically at Tier One are moved into Tier Two based on RtI protocol. This tier includes evidence-based instruction provided to targeted students during their 2nd block of ELA in addition to the regular classroom instructionTier Two instruction lasts for the entire school year for any student identified as Tier 2. Should a student require more support than what is offered in Tier Two, she will be moved to Tier Three. Instruction at this level is still evidence-based, but is provided on a more individualized level (3-6 students per group) for at least 27 minutes four days per week in addition to regular classroom instruction and Tier 2. Progress is monitored regularly.

Science Laboratory Requirements

In-person instructional model:

The 1200 Lab minutes will be modified and adapted for Online Learning according to the guidelines: Teacher will develop and provide in-person instructions for all students to complete all required Lab minutes.

  • Teachers will maintain all social distance guidelines, masks wearing, hand washing and equipment handling safety guidelines in the science room and Lab designated classroom.
  • To effectively conduct the simulated and virtual laboratory experiences, Lab reports will be completed to satisfy the 1,200 minute laboratory requirement for students who will take Science Regents Examination during a future test administration.

Remote and Hybrid Lab instruction

  • ALH will make it a priority to complete only the mandatory Labs whenever students attend in-person.
  • Selective simulated or virtual laboratory experiences be conducted and used toward the 1,200 minute requirement for all students.
  • ALH will continue to explore appropriate technology to access and conduct lessons in virtual labs for remote only instructions.
  • All students will receive clear guidance and directions in how to use scientific methods and core concepts to develop scientific skills that can be applied to completing Lab projects independently.

Arts

All Art classes in Studio Art I&II and Photography I&II offer students a project-based approach to learning about art and artists and making art in the classroom. The resources have been adapted to allow all students the opportunities to be creative in selecting and utilizing found objects, materials and other resources that are readily available in their specific environment. The focus will be on understanding the visual vocabulary, artists and art, and varieties of skills, techniques, and aesthetic decisions involved in making outcomes that can be realized in-person and digitally.

All Students will have the opportunity to  produce works at the mastery level of the standards that demonstrate ability to effectively and properly use the Elements of Art and Principles of Design in a variety of artwork at the end of the courses in Studio Art I & II and Photography I & II.

In-Person Instruction:

  • Students will be presented with a visual problem and a set of media skills and concepts which they need to effectively plan, perform, and produce to demonstrate mastery.
  • This is a hands-on approach to learning that gives students the opportunity for sharing a completed and presentable product for public consumption or exhibition, including an annual Art fair.

Remote and Hybrid:

  • Art programs and instruction have been adapted to support both in-person and remote learning.
  • All students have access to DOWNLOAD lessons & open lessons in Google Docs.
  • Teacher will provide clear instructions for students to read the assignment and complete the lesson task, and to UPLOAD and Submit the completed assignment task in Google Classroom.

Physical Education

ALH will continue to provide flexibility in the delivery of physical education.

All Learning standards will be taught and modified to allow all students the opportunity to participate in-person or perform similar skills remotely. Performance tasks will be observed and recorded using a variety of assessment modalities:

  • Students will have the opportunity to record via video or in-person their Personal SMART Goal via a digital or hard copy Worksheet
  • Students will create accurate SMART Goal, Executed Plan, with Video / Picture Evidence
  • PE Activity Log – Form
  • Adapt the number of Days and times students will be required to be active: for example, 50 minutes in-person activity may be reduced to 30 minutes, however, the required demonstration and display of understanding of intensity for activity will be maintained.
  • The 5 Fitness Components – Worksheet
  • Picture/video of 2 Performance exercises with accurate Compare & Contrast of Fitness Concepts
  • Assessment will be ongoing and may include – Formal Quiz and video recording submissions of performance skills, displaying a deep cognitive understanding & application of each learning standard.
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