MGI Module 4 Final Project

Module 4: Creating a College-Going Culture in the Middle School
Module Four: Final Project
Fall 2015
The CAP Class Final Project consists of two parts:
Part I is a set of questions for your thoughtful consideration and response.
Part II is an opportunity for you to learn, first-hand, about plans underway to cultivate
a high-expectations, college-going culture at your school through your district’s
participation in the GEAR UP Middle-Grade Initiative (MGI), and to reflect upon what
you learn.
NOTE: The text boxes in the below chart will expand as you type.
Please use all the space you need to fully express your ideas.
PART I: Discussion Questions
Reference: Creating a College-Going Culture Resources Guide
1. Indicators of a College-Going Culture
Identify the indicators of a college-going culture that you see in your school and areas
that you believe could be improved. Please discuss both indicators and areas/strategies
for improvement:
2. Student Academic Preparation and Postsecondary Readiness
What are some barriers that you see students in your school face, to achieving
academic readiness for postsecondary success, and some strategies that you believe
could effectively address those barriers? Please discuss both barriers and strategies:
3. Awareness of Post-secondary Education Options
What choices do students in Arizona have for education/training after high school?
What are some strategies to increase students’ knowledge and awareness of these
post-secondary education options? Please discuss.
4. Academic Planning and Transitioning to High School
Module 4: Creating a College-Going Culture in the Middle School
What difference does course-taking and course selection have on students’ preparation
for high school, career, and college – and how do you see that students in your school
are guided or supported in this area now? Please discuss.
5. School-wide Strategies for CCR in the Middle Grades
How might college and career planning principles and activities be infused or imparted
by way of a school’s curriculum or other ‘school-wide’ opportunities/activities?
6. Resources to Promote College and Career Readiness and Development
What are some of the local, state, and/or national resources available to schools that
you believe could be most useful in promoting students’ readiness in the middle school
years? How or why? Please discuss.
PART II: Project Activity
-- Middle Grade Initiative 2015-16: CCR Action Plan (for your district)
Background. The multi-year Middle Grade Initiative (MGI) is a partnership
between NAU GEAR UP and nine Arizona school districts in rural communities that is
premised on using data to drive a sustainable, high-expectations, college-going culture
in middle grade schools. The effort aims to show an increase, over the length of the
program, in percentages of eighth grade students entering high school on-track to
graduate college and career ready. Recognizing that “the level of academic
achievement that students attain by the eighth grade has a larger impact on their
college and career readiness by the time they graduate from high school than anything
that happens academically in high school” (The Forgotten Middle, 2008), the MGI
promotes professional development and use of data to inform improvements in
curriculum and instruction (early readiness), as well as students’ preparation and
motivation for a full range of postsecondary options (early awareness).
1. Read your school/district’s MGI-CCR Action Plan.
2. Learn who the individuals are that are serving on the MGI College and Career Ready
Team (CCRT) at the school(s) within your district. (see last page of Action Plan)
3. Based on what you have learned from the CAP class readings and discussion, make a
list of questions that come to mind about your school’s plan in 2015-16, for creating a
Module 4: Creating a College-Going Culture in the Middle School
sustainable, high-expectations, college-going culture in your school. What would you
like to know or better understand about: a) the Early Readiness component of the Plan
this year sections 1.1 and 1.2) and/or the Early Awareness component (sections 2.1,
2.2, and 2.3).
4. Request and arrange to meet with one or more of the individuals on the CCRT to
discuss your questions.
5. Prepare a narrative summary (below), that:
a) pre-interview, informs of your primary interest area (readiness or awareness) and
why, and the questions you had, and
b) post-interview, informs on what you learned/took away from the discussion;
ideas/thoughts generally, since, including suggestions and recommendations related to
successful Plan implementation, considerations for the future, etc.
Narrative Summary: