Our school is helping all students develop the World Class Skills of the Profile of the South Carolina Graduate by providing a diverse curriculum, advanced resources, and rigorous performance expectations. Each of these develops the whole student and prepares him or her to excel in the college classroom or a dynamic career field.
Classroom instruction is structured around tasks and questioning strategies that require students to apply their knowledge of the content standards and skills as required by the SC standards. Students learn strategies needed to interpret complex tasks, identify the needed content or skill to answer or complete the tasks, and communicate their answer through writing or a presentation. These skills are critical for all students to engage in our changing college landscape and excel in a diverse and emerging technical economy. Our students are preparing to constantly learn new information and apply it quickly.
These tasks begin in the 9th grade with project based learning in content area classes and our central 9th grade Freshmen Seminar course. In Freshmen Seminar, students begin college and career exploration, engage in and complete projects utilizing online research and data analysis, develop basic college and career ready skills, and create a personal online portfolio. Each of these creates a college and career vision for the students and guides their development over the next three years.
In the 10th and 11th grades, students engage in diverse course opportunities including college courses. Once a student has met the requirements for admission into classes at Greenville Technical College, we assist them in the registration process for courses of interest based on their career goals. Our school is located on the Brashier campus of the college, and, as a result, our students walk to the college classrooms and attend class with other college students. This environment is important in preparing them to manage the pace, rigor, requirements, and social skills needed to excel at the college level. These courses are taught outside of the high school structure.
Finally, in the 12th grade, all students complete a capstone project. This Senior Project requires them to identify a project, establish a plan to complete the project (including a budget, schedule, research questions), locate a mentor with experience in the project’s area and establish a meeting schedule. Another option for these 12th graders is a year-long internship. Students completed internships in areas ranging from opportunities in the medical field to the classroom. Throughout the year, students are documenting their process in a digital portfolio that includes documentation of their product development, personal reflection and planning, research data, and mentor meetings. The year culminates with each student presenting his or her project to a panel of community judges.
Teachers meet weekly in professional development sessions to review student performance in order to find strengths and needs, identify and learn strategies to support students, and design projects and assessments that use researched best practices. By spending time reviewing specific student performance, our teachers can monitor progress toward mastery and adjust their instruction when needed. This year teachers learned and implemented strategies to help students become more independent learners. These strategies were directly correlated to college and career skills as well as skills aligned with ACT, SAT, and End of Course testing.
Our parents continue to be very involved in the school from assisting with the lunch program, working on outreach projects for the school, serving on the Board of Directors, speaking to classes, and many other areas. This partnership with our families supports our philosophy of providing a “whole team” of resources for each student in an effort to support them during difficulties and challenging them in times of success.
Our community supports our students by providing resources, serving as mentors, serving as Board members, and judging Senior Projects. These connections allow our students, faculty, and staff to learn from these experts, provide more vision for our students’ college and career pathways, and create opportunities for employment or research in the future.
Brashier Middle College Charter High School is committed to providing each student with the skills and knowledge required to enter college, a career, or the military. By requiring students to master at least 80% of the course requirements in order to receive credit, students learn more and develop a work ethic of exceeding expectations. The world’s knowledge base changes quickly, career fields emerge daily, and the military constantly becomes more sophisticated and technical. We must prepare our students with the knowledge needed to enter these opportunities, the skills needed to learn and adapt to new situations, and a drive to constantly learn and achieve.
John Trone, Chairman of the Board of Directors
Michael Sinclair, Principal