University High School has been awarded a $50,000 matching grant from the Edward E. Ford Foundation to create the E.E. Ford Fellows program for teachers.
“The E.E. Ford Foundation recognizes exceptional schools from across the country,” said Head of School Chuck Webster. “There is national-level recognition in this award, especially for a school as young as ours.”
Now entering its 17th school year, University High School has successfully applied the mission and core values to its student culture and to its signature programs of January Term, mentoring, and community meeting. The goal for the school now is to ensure that the day-to-day teaching of students lives up to its mission in the most effective way possible. The E.E. Ford Fellows program at University High School will accomplish this.
The idea behind the program is simple: Who better to drive classroom innovation than teachers?
Here’s how the E.E. Ford Fellows program at University High School will work:
- The opening phase (fall 2016) will focus on idea exploration. It will engage teachers by exposing them to the latest work on faculty collaboration, classroom innovation, student leadership, the intersections between pedagogy and assessment, and scheduling. Speakers and experts will be brought in by the school. Faculty will be empowered to go out and learn, to educational conferences as well as to peer schools that are teaching students in interesting and noteworthy ways.
- In the second phase (2017), faculty will hone in on ideas or approaches they want to explore. The school will award micro-grants to teachers, giving them the time and money to fully research and develop their ideas.
- The final phase (spring 2018) will be the implementation of new ideas and practices at University High School. Teachers who successfully implement ideas or approaches in their classrooms will also have the opportunity to present to other schools at local, regional, and national conferences.
As Webster said, “The E.E. Ford Fellows program will allow University High School to make our already good academic program even better for our students and families.”
The $50,000 challenge grant from the E.E. Ford Foundation must be matched 1:1 in donations to University High School by the end of the 2016-17 school year. Total, the school commits to spending all $100,000 in professional development in the next two years.
With questions about implementation of the E.E. Ford Fellows program at University High School, contact Assistant Head of School Alicia LaMagdeleine. With questions about supporting the E.E. Ford Fellows program, contact Director of Annual Fund & Alumni Relations Adrianne Glidewell Smith.