PEACHTREE CORNERS - Veteran educators and aspiring teachers are invited to attend a free professional development conference hosted by Ivy Preparatory Academy Network on Thursday, June 5, in Peachtree Corners that will share innovative strategies to improve student achievement.
The 2014 Collaboration Conference will be held from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Ivy Prep Academy’s Gwinnett campus at 3705 Engineering Drive. The event
will feature special guest speakers, networking, and seminars on
curriculum development, classroom management, tracking student data, and education leadership.
Educators will have an opportunity to
share their classroom experiences and get advice from experts who have
successfully transformed low-performing classrooms in traditional and
public charter schools.
“Collaboration is all about
experimentation and bringing in outside perspectives,” said Jacob Cole, a spokesman for Ivy Preparatory Network. “As educators, we develop
certain behaviors and routines that we think are best for our children.
However, an outside observer might take a look and some of those
practices and see room for improvement. As long as we stay in our own
academic bubble, we never have the opportunity for that constructive
criticism. We don’t have a chance to see innovative practices unless we
create it ourselves.”
Ivy Preparatory Academy will lead
collaboration efforts by sharing its school operations manual with
attendees. The network’s lead founder, Nina Gilbert and its executive
director, Victoria Wiley, will discuss how the state’s first
single-gender public charter school network built its school culture,
college prep curriculum, and climate. Ivy Prep Academy has a proven
record of narrowing the achievement gap between students of different
Students in the flagship charter
school routinely outperformed their peers in Gwinnett County and
statewide on the Georgia Criterion Reference-Competency Test. In 2012,
Ivy Prep Gwinnett was the only public middle school in Gwinnett County
to be named a "rewards school" for high-test performance among minority
and low-income students.
Conference attendees will receive a copy of Ivy Prep’s best practices guide, “The Ivy Prep Way,” which is a
blueprint for helping students in urban schools to achieve. Ivy Prep
earned accreditation in 2013 from SACS, the Southern Association of
Colleges and Schools.
“I am beyond excited about the opportunity
to share Ivy’s best practices with the world, as well as hear from other schools on how they are serving students,” said Wiley of the
conference, which is being funded by a federal grant completed and won
by Cole. “This began with, Jacob Cole, a former sixth grade social
studies teacher and our current director of communications. He
envisioned greatness for his classroom and our school by sharing the
elements that have proven success with other schools. His efforts are
entrepreneurial and demonstrate a ‘doing whatever it takes’ mindset.
It is my hope the conference is full to capacity with educators ready to
elevate their craft. We welcome all educators from traditional public,
private and other charter schools.”
Ivy Preparatory Network
schools provide educational choice to a diverse group of students
including those in middle-income households in neighborhoods burdened
with crime, poverty, and low expectations for kids. Ivy Preparatory
Schools in Gwinnett and DeKalb have extended days, an extended year, and double daily doses of math, language arts and other core classes.
“Attendees will have the opportunity to hear from veteran Ivy Prep educators and
get an inside look at the techniques and strategies that have allowed
Ivy Prep to perform at exceptional levels,” Cole said.
administrators speaking at the 2014 Collaboration Conference will
encourage fellow educators at charter schools and traditional public
schools across metro Atlanta to share information and see each other as
partners in the business of helping students to succeed.
artists borrow; great artists steal,” Cole said of an old adage. “The
same is true of educators, and we have to create those opportunities to
‘steal’ effective practice from each other.”
Educators interested in attending the free 2014 Collaboration Conference can register at
www.tgae.org, the website of The Georgia Achievement Exchange, a nonprofit being
developed to foster continued collaboration between Georgia educators.
Attendees should come to the conference prepared with classroom
materials and ideas related to the sessions they will attend.
Refreshments will be served.