2014 SCCS Annual Report FINAL - New Liberty Charter School of

Salem Community Charter School
2013-2014 Annual Report
Salem Community Charter School
Museum Place Mall, Second Floor
Salem, MA 01970
Jessica Yurwitz, Principal
978-825-3470 (phone)
978-825-3475 (fax)
July 20, 2014
Table of Contents
1. Introduction to the School
2. Letter from the Chair of the Board of Trustees
3. Faithfulness to Charter
a. SCCS Accountability Plan
b. Mission and Key Design Elements
c. Amendments to Charter
d. Access and Equity
e. Recruitment
i. Recruitment Summary
ii. 2013/14 General Recruitment Activities and Progress Made
iii. 2013/14 Recruitment Activities for Specific Demographic Groups and
2014/15 Goals
f. Retention
i. Retention Summary
ii. 2013/14 General Retention Activities and Progress
iii. 2013/14 Retention Activities for Specific Demographic Groups and Goals
iv. 2014/15 Retention Activities
g. Dissemination
4. Success of the Academic Program
a. SCCS Accountability Plan
b. Common Performance Criteria
c. Academic Priorities of 2014/15
5. Organizational Viability
a. SCCS Accountability Plan
b. Complaints
c. Budget and Finance
d. Organizational Structure
6. Additional Information
a. Student Demographic Information
b. Administrative Roster
c. Teacher and Staff Attrition
d. Board Members
e. Key Leadership Changes
f. Facilities Changes
g. Enrollment
7. Report on Conditions
8. Appendix
a. Competency Development Progress Report (July 2014)
1. Introduction to the School
Salem Community Charter School
Type of Charter
Horace Mann
Salem, MA
Regional or Non-Regional?
Districts in Region
Year Opened
Year(s) Renewed
Maximum Enrollment
Current Enrollment
Number of instructional Days
Students on Waitlist
Chartered Grade Span
Ungraded (9-12)
Current Grade Span
Ungraded (9-12)
School Hours
Age of School
Three Years
Mission Statement:
Salem Community Charter School is an innovative, alternative public high school that collaborates with
a broad coalition of community partners to serve 125 students ages 16-23 who have either dropped
out of school or are at-risk of dropping out as a result of personal challenges and obstacles that
interfere with their school success. In addition to an academically rigorous program of study, students
receive supportive and therapeutic services to assist them in achieving a high school diploma and
continuing on with higher education and/or work and career opportunities.
2. Letter from the Chair
25 July 2014
Dear Commissioner Chester:
It is a pleasure to write this year’s introductory letter to the 2013/14 SCCS Annual Report on behalf of the Board, our
staff and students. We are proud of, and excited with the progress the school has made since that day in 2010 when
this innovative school was no more than a concept. There is nothing more challenging, or rewarding when successful,
than the creation and implementation of a new vision. In the last twelve months we have moved into our new
educational home, facilities designed based on our mission; completed our own SCCS competency based curriculum
and benchmarks; and enhanced mission critical structural elements including student stabilization and employment
opportunities. As you noted in your correspondence in March 2014, “The early years of operation are a critical time
for a new school.” The SCCS vision, requiring the development of competency-based curriculum merged with
stabilization services and expanded career training opportunities, has certainly been a challenge.
Progress since the beginning of the year has been dramatic. In late winter we had not yet secured a safe and adequate
facility and curriculum remained a work in progress. The SCCS Board was disappointed when the operating
conditions were not removed but encouraged with the confidence displayed in your summary remarks, “This decision
comes with the expectation that SCCS can fulfill the conditions and offer a successful educational program to the
students it serves.” The SCCS Board expects to demonstrate that your faith in us was well founded.
The SCCS Board has grown and evolved, and with the addition of 4 new enthusiastic and knowledgeable members;
has committed both time and energy to board education, infrastructure development, and strategic planning.
Following a two day strategic planning workshop, organized by Peoplesworth and the Essex County Community
Foundation, attended by board members and school staff, a subcommittee of the board has completed a
comprehensive strategic plan which will bring be brought forward to the full board at our next meeting for approval.
School leadership has become proactive with the Salem School Committee and Salem political leaders, meeting
regularly to improve communication and avoid misunderstandings. With a better understanding of the SCCS mission,
resources were allocated that funded our new home, increasing our learning space from approximately 4000 square
feet of space to 14,000 square feet designed specifically for our mission. The facility is a dream; safe, bright, and
energizing, with appropriately designed classrooms and meeting spaces.
Other accomplishments include the completion of our accountability plan and the competency based curriculum. Both
were approved by the SCCS Board and are now in place.
The SCCS Board and staff are particularly proud of the growth and accomplishments seen within our students, many
of whom face numerous life challenges that span beyond the classroom, e.g., homelessness, poverty, history of
substance abuse, and social/emotional challenges. In spite of these obstacles, many students have made significant
progress at SCCS, and seventeen of them graduated.
There are many challenges ahead, but the SCCS Board is encouraged with our school’s advancement. Although initial
progress was slow, it was deliberate and the foundation is now in place to assure a bright future. With a new facility
that is operational and a curriculum in place, we can now focus on improving quality, growth and a strategic vision.
Thank you for this opportunity to share our progress with you and for your continued support of our students and the
Salem Community Charter School. Please do not hesitate to contact me if we may provide further information.
Edward Bailey, MD FAAP
Chair, SCCS Board of Trustees
3. Faithfulness to Charter
3A. Faithfulness to Charter: SCCS Accountability Plan
Objective #1: SCCS staff will develop and implement an innovative, competency-based curriculum to serve our target
population of vulnerable young adults.
Measure 1A:
SCCS staff will develop a competencybased curriculum according to the
following schedule
 By July 2014: Learning Targets
will be completed and aligned to
the common core
 By July 2014: Capstone
curriculum and associated
assessment tools will be
Measure 1B:
SCCS staff will implement its
competency-based curriculum
according to the following schedule:
 By July 2014: 90% of Stage
THREE on the “SCCS Competency
Development Progress Report”
This year SCCS staff transitioned from using their own competencies in
Individualized Learning Plan (ILP) 11 to ILP 12. At the end of the year, as per our
measure, ILP 13 (see Appendix) was finished and includes competencies,
benchmarks, and learning targets that align with the Common Core and
Massachusetts State Frameworks.
SCCS staff engaged in frequent meetings with the school’s Educational Consultant,
Principal, and Curriculum Coordinator to develop, review, and refine new learning
targets this year. The Curriculum Coordinator met once a week with academic staff
in order to develop Learning Targets while refining Benchmarks.
SCCS staff created a “Finishing Team” in order to edit and revise ILP 13 so that it is
(a) cohesive and (b) cited properly to reflect its connections to the Common Core
across all competencies.
SCCS staff implemented this program and used it solely throughout SY 2013-2014.
Capstone Curriculum and its associated assessment tools and supports were
modified throughout the SY 2013-2014 based on student need. Rubrics for
Capstone Research, Product, and Presentation were finalized (see Appendix), as
well as curriculum for the portion of the class that is directly taught.
Coordinators completed a 2-day Professional Development in July 2014 and worked
together to refine the Capstone Curriculum based on staff meetings to discuss what
worked and what needed to be fixed in order for students to have the best
experience possible while completing Capstone.
Capstone Curriculum now directly correlates with the SCCS Graduate Profile so that
students are proving that they meet those standards set for our graduates.
100% of Stage One on the “SCCS Competency Development Progress Report” (see
Appendix) is completed.
100% of Stage Two on the “SCCS Competency Development Progress Report” (see
Appendix) is completed. Last year only 68% of Stage Two was complete.
67% of Stage Three on the “SCCS Competency Development Progress Report” is
completed with the remaining 33% of Stage Three Nearing Completion. Last year
only 17% of Stage Three was complete.
The school has begun working past Stage Three, which makes the 67% listed above
an inaccurate representation of how much progress on the “SCCS Competency
Development Progress Report” has been made. It became necessary to work in
Stages Three, Four, and Five concurrently.
57% of Stage Four on the “SCCS Competency Development Progress Report” are
completed, while 29% are Nearing Completion and the remaining 14% is in Early
Development stages.
Stage Five (Leading) was added to the “SCCS Competency Development Progress
Report” in SY 2013-2014.
The school has already begun implementing Stage Five. 50% of Stage Five
benchmarks on the “SCCS Competency Development Progress Report” are in the
Nearing Completion stage. 25% are in Early Development and 25% are Not Yet
Objective #2: SCCS staff will provide supportive and therapeutic services to assist our vulnerable students in
overcoming the obstacles they face in their quest for a high school diploma and in maintaining personal
stability post graduation.
Measure 2A:
SCCS staff will achieve and then
maintain average monthly student
attendance of over 70% by January
Average Monthly Attendance = 66%. During the 2013/14 school year, the
following interventions were implemented to increase attendance:
Daily texting and phone calls to remind to get to school.
Incentives for good attendance, rewards for improvement in attendance. Student
competitions to win overall award for attendance.
Creating excellent student-teacher relationships, particularly through advisory.
Measure 2B:
SCCS staff will document an increase
in positive, pro-social, pro-school
feelings and behaviors over time.
Evidence will include 90% of
students enrolled for two or more
consecutive quarters will report proschool feelings and experiences at
SCCS as measured by their
responding positively to the following
questions on our annual school
culture survey and/or the YRBS:
 Are you known well by at least
one staff member at SCCS?
 Do you feel safe and supported
at SCCS?
 Do you feel academically
successful at SCCS?
Measure 2C:
90% of students enrolled for three
or more consecutive quarters will
have an increase in “pro-social”
items and a reduction in
“concerning” items as scored on the
BASC2 assessment as compared to
their initial BASC2 assessment at
Measure 2D:
SCCS graduates will continue to
develop the skills they learned at
SCCS and 70% of SCCS graduates
will be enrolled in a post-secondary
educational program (community
college, four year college, technical
school) or working full time (20+
hours a week) during their first
post-graduate year.
Measure 2E:
SCCS graduates will continue to
develop the skills they learned at
SCCS and 90% of SCCS graduates
will remain engaged with SCCS staff
and use SCCS resources for social
and emotional support, educational
planning or employment counseling
at least three times during their first
post-graduate year.
Objective #3:
Attendance tracking by advisory, individual support plans, family and collateral
meetings to determine the obstacles impeding attendance. Counseling sessions to
address underlying problems preventing good attendance. Communication with
probation officers and other collaterals regarding attendance and behavior.
 Helping students increase their attendance overtime through flexible scheduling.
 Case management to encourage student stability. Providing food to families to help
support the connection to school. Collaborative problem solving (Plan B)
meetings. As a very last resort, removal of students from the rolls due to nonattendance.
On a 10 question school culture survey given in early July 2014:
100% of students stated they agreed or strongly agreed that they are well known
by at least one staff member at SCCS.
100% of students agreed or strongly agreed that they felt safe at SCCS.
95% of students surveyed agreed or strongly agreed that they feel supported by
staff and teachers at SCCS.
91% of students surveyed agreed or strongly agreed that they feel academically
successful at SCCS.
86% of students enrolled for three or more consecutive quarters had a reduction
in the number of clinically significant concerning items on the BASC-2. We
connected students with outside counseling and in-school support to address
clinically significant concerns. Pro social skills -- self-esteem, self-reliance,
interpersonal relations stayed the same on the BASC-2 from the start to the end of
the year for these students.
We are exploring additional measures we can use to track the social and emotional
growth of our students over time. We have found that the BASC2 does not
measure mental health and personal stability in enough detail to be a useful
growth measure for our population.
7/11 graduates are working full time (20+hours a week)
4/11 graduates are engaged in part-time community college. 1 of these students is
completing honors-level courses.
2/11 graduates have obtained their CNAs
1/11 graduate has completed a vocational training program
2/11 graduates are full-time parents
All graduates received an email, text, or phone call (depending on the method by
which they preferred to be contacted) at least 3, 6, 9, and 12 months postgraduation. 9/11 replied to these outreach efforts and engaged in post-graduate
10/11 graduates came back to the school at least once during the 2013-2014
school year.
7/11 graduates came back for college/career help in the 2013-2014 school year
4/11 graduates came back specifically to mentor 2014 graduates and participate
in capstone panels for 2014 graduates.
7/11 graduates received assistance completing job and/or college applications
over the past year.
SCCS staff collaborates with a broad coalition of community partners to provide innovative on-site
employment preparation and an array of on and off-site sheltered employment opportunities.
Measure 3A:
SCCS will consistently have at least
50% of our student population
engaged in sheltered or
55% of our student population engaged in sheltered or independent employment
this school year – through our YouthBuild, Say Media, First Jobs or independent
independent employment per
All other SCCS students will be
involved in on-site employment
preparation, including:
employment readiness and career
exploration classes, individual
counseling and social skills
Measure 3B:
SCCS staff will add one sheltered
employment opportunity per year
for the first five years.
A couple of examples of sheltered employment included Librarian duties at our
school, secretarial duties at SCCS and employment offered through our mall
neighbors such as the Salem Cinema.
72% of our student population engaged in on-site employment preparation classes,
including employment readiness and career exploration classes. This included the
new Kitchen/Hospitality class 101.
SCCS collaborated with Journeys of Hope to create a third sheltered employment
opportunity this year – a hospitality/culinary program. The Kitchen 101 class was
created for students interested in working, running or one day owning their own
restaurant. This opportunity allows students to be creative in the kitchen while
learning basic cooking and baking skills and covers kitchen safety as well as
workplace professionalism. SCCS staff and Journeys of Hope plan to collaborate on
a social enterprise in the near future in increase programming to include paid
hospitality internships next year.
SCCS made the following improvements to the other two sheltered employment
o SCCS and CDC Youth Build staff refined the curriculum and competencies in
all internship programs using the national YouthBuild curriculum as a
model. (See Appendix for program description and outcomes).
o The SCCS/CDC Youth Build underwent a very successful audit and
inspection by Youth Build of Massachusetts. The SCCS YB program was
granted full membership in the Massachusetts YB Coalition.
o The SCCS/CDC Youth Build program applied for Department of Labor
funding for the program and anticipates a response by August 2014.
o SCCS and the YMCA increased staffing for the Say Media program from one
part time position to one FTE position.
o Say Media and YB staff are involved in all SCCS staff trainings
3B. Faithfulness to Charter: Mission and Key Design Elements
Common Criteria #1:
Mission and Key Design
The school is faithful to its mission,
implements the key design
elements outlined in its charter,
and substantially meets its
accountability plan goals.
 SCCS is a small, competency based alternative school serving a population of high risk
young adults who face significant obstacles in their quest for a high school diploma.
 SCCS met 8/10 of the Accountability Plan Goals in 2013/14 and made significant
progress on the remaining two goals.
 SCCS stakeholders share a common and consistent understanding of the school’s
mission and key design elements outlined in the charter, as evidenced in our to our
Year Three Site Visit.
 SCCS is still in the early stages of implementing its charter, but as year three comes to
a close, many more elements of the SCCS Charter have been added and/or refined,
including: assessment by portfolio and exhibition, student designed competency
development opportunities, flexible scheduling, online and hybrid classes, as well as
synchronous and asynchronous course options. We have also expanded our
community partnerships to increase the social/emotional supports and career
readiness options available to our students.
 SCCS has made excellent progress in the implementation of its competency based
education system. (See appendix for a detailed Progress Report). 100% of the new
competencies are written, along with 100% of the benchmarks and approximately
90% of the learning targets are completed. All staff received extensive professional
development on competency-based education both onsite and at regional conferences
such as the BDEA summer institute and the national iNacol conference.
 SCCS is attracting the high-risk population of potential high school dropouts it was
designed to serve: the school has started each quarter this year at full capacity. The
school has done extensive data collection to understand the specific risk factors SCCS
students face and to then creates programs to increase their personal stability and
support their work towards a high school diploma and stable employment. (See
appendix: risk factor chart and school based programs).
 SCCS began using the new Jumprope student information and tracking system in
December 2013. This new system allows us to track information about student
attendance, behavior and competency completion in new, dynamic ways.
3C: Faithfulness to Charter: Amendments to Charter
June 9, 2014
Amendment Requested
The board of trustees of Salem Community Charter School (SCCS) submitted a request to
alter its charter growth plan. The original growth plan for the school included the school
serving its chartered maximum enrollment of 125 students by the 2014-15 school year.
The chartered plan has not been realized primarily due to the school not having a large
enough facility. SCCS has secured an adequate facility during FY14 and respectfully
request serving 65-80 students during the 2014-15 school year and 100 students during
the 2015-16 school year.
Approved by
July 21, 2014
3D: Faithfulness to Charter: Access and Equity
Common Criteria #2:
Access and Equity
The school ensures program access
and equity for all students eligible
to attend the school.
 The SCCS principal and counseling staff maintains positive working relationships with
the principal and adjustment counselors at Salem High School. Through multiple
meetings and ongoing collaborations on behalf of students, staff at both schools
developed a shared understanding of the students who can benefit from the services
SCCS provides and a clear referral process.
 The SCCS rolling admissions policy allows students to enter and re-enter the school at
the start of each quarter allows for increased access to the school.
3E: Faithfulness to Charter: Recruitment
3Ei Recruitment Summary for 2013/14
Since SCCS opened in 2011, school personnel have analyzed student data to determine what demographic groups students are best served
by our competency-based educational system. While it is clear that this environment suits the needs of our high-risk population, there are
subgroups within our student body that our school works for better than others. We have been very successful in recruiting these vulnerable and
underserved populations. These subgroups include:
 Homeless, unaccompanied youth
 LGBT students
 Young parents and pregnant teens
 Youth who have struggled with mental health problems and/or that have a history of trauma
 Youth that feel overwhelmed or anxious in a large school environment
 Youth and young adults who are involved with probation and the courts
 ELL students who have had limited exposure to school in their primary language.
In order to recruit these students efficiently and effectively, over this year, the counseling and special ed staff invested considerable time into
developing stronger personal and professional relationships with Salem Public School staff. This increased collaboration led to the creation
of a variety of new programs and support systems including:
 Deb Connerty, a district special educator, has been added as our SPED liaison
 Monthly meetings with all alternative school staff in Salem to do case studies and make placement recommendations.
 Margaret Marotta (Asst Superintendent) and Andrew Wulf (Salem High Curriculum Coordinator -have been added to the SCCS
Board of Trustees
 Quarterly meetings with Meg the Program Director of the the Bridge Academy (an alternative program) within Salem High School.
Additionally, throughout the year our clinical staff collaborated and had frequent conversations with juvenile and adult probation officers to
effectively support our high-risk students involved with the court.
Some of our recruitment activities in 2013-2014 were impacted by the delay in our new school construction. This limited our recruitment
opportunities us because we were in a small temporary space with a capacity to serve only 50 students. Even so, we met most of our
recruitment percentage goals for the year.
On March 17, 2014, we moved into our larger school building. A very well attended Ribbon Cutting Ceremony to officially open our new
school site was held on April 17, 2014. Heading into the last quarter of the school year, we were able to recruit more robustly. Recently, our
school has taken several exciting steps towards greater name recognition and increased publicity. These steps include:
 The SCCS Coordinators of Academic Support, Counseling Services, and Curriculum gave a presentation at the Youth At Risk
Conference on June 4, 2014 about our Competency based school and how we support high risk youth to achieve academic success
while decreasing their risk factors. This presentation was attended by over 75 professionals and was well received.
 The creation of a new school name, which better distinguishes us from the other charter school in Salem, thus making recruitment
efforts less confusing. Our new name, New Liberty Charter School, was approved on June 23, 2014.
 Our new school website went live on July 2, 2014. The web address is: www.salemcharter.com.
 Students from our school helped to put up posters for our school in neighborhoods throughout Salem
 New flyers and educational material has been given to local probation officers, judges, the parent information center, the career
center, the Department of Transitional Services, the Department of Children and Families, Cyberspace, Salem YMCA, the CDC,
Journeys of Hope, The On Point Diversion Center, local restaurants and coffee shops as well as many churches.
 We have started hosting and promoting four Open Houses over the summer of 2014. Our current students and graduates will be
called on to be spokespeople for our school for these events.
 On July 22nd, the principal and one of our counselors met with all students in Salem High School who are in summer school classes
(approximately 100 students). These students’ parents will be receiving a follow up letter and the counselor will be calling all of
these students to follow up in August, in order to emphasize a personal connection to our school.
Below are two charts. The first details our general plans from last year’s annual report, and our progress made for each of the planned
activities. The second details our specific goals per subgroup from the 2012-2013 annual report and progress made towards these goals.
General Recruitment Activities and Progress Made in 2013/14
Planned Activities
New promotional information will be
disseminated in August by principal,
and throughout the year by Student
Support staff.
 SCCS staff, students and Salem city officials collaborated to create a new name for
the school that will be submitted to DESE for approval in August of 2014.
 SCCS staff and students created a Leadership Class, developed materials targeted at
Work with Salem High and Collins MS
principals and counselors to identify
students who are at-risk of dropping
out. Clarify for Salem staff that SCCS
can and should recruit students who
are at risk of dropping out BEFORE
they drop out.
Meet with the Salem Parent
Information Center (PIC) staff once a
year to explain the opportunities
SCCS can offer students and meet
specifically with the Coordinated
 SCCS Principal met quarterly with the Salem middle and high school principals.
 SCCS student support staff met regularly with Salem High counselors and Bridge
to the specific questions and concerns young adults have about SCCS and created
tour speeches for student led tours of SCCS.
New promotional materials were developed (including brochures, posters, website
and informational materials) from winter-summer 2014.
Open houses scheduled for the spring and summer of 2014.
Information has been disseminated to local organizations, collaterals, and students.
(See narrative above.)
Three major articles about SCCS have been published this year, including one in the
Boston Globe and another in North Shore Magazine that will be published in August
Program staff. They particularly clarified SCCS’s target populations and created
streamlined application and intake procedures.
Twelve current SCCS students came directly from Salem High before dropping out.
SCCS staff actively worked with Administrators at Salem High School and Salem
Public Schools, particularly the Pupil Personnel Department to prevent any further
drop-outs and to encourage applications to SCCS instead.
 SCCS staff has weekly contact with the Salem Parent Information Center (PIC)
 SCCS principal met with PIC staff to provide an overview of SCCS services, and target
 SCCS participated in district-wide information distribution through the PIC and local
Family Community Engagement grant
coordinator on a quarterly basis to
review new programs and current
seat availability.
SCCS will expand the information and
materials available on the school
website and designate a staff member
who will be in charge of making
monthly updates to the site.
news media.
 Informational White Papers written on SCCS model and competency-based
education created for distribution on the website
 Website designed and populated with information winter-spring 2014. Launched
late spring 2014.
 Three staff members trained in html to update the website regularly.
 A course was created for low level writers and ELL class to write and edit content
for the website. This class will continue to expand its scope to include other public
relations materials, including social media materials for SCCS.
SCCS will develop new informational
materials, including a school
brochure and poster, which can be
distributed to local social service
agencies, health centers,
neighborhood organizations, youth
and family centers, juvenile court and
grocery stores.
SCCS staff will do outreach to
neighborhood groups, community
organizations, and individual
students throughout the school year
to provide accurate information
about the SCCS and to explain why it
is a sound alternative route to earning
a high school diploma for students
who are at risk of dropping out
 New materials (brochures, website, informational white papers, etc) have been
created and materials were distributed throughout the year.
 SCCS secured pro-bono photography and design services to create these materials.
 Throughout summer of 2014, SCCS have be engaged in a robust recruitment
 SCCS has partnered with many organizations this year, including: the YMCA, the
CDC, Journeys of Hope, Catholic Charities, Mass Coalition for the Homeless, Women’s
Society of Salem, Salem State, The Salem Rotary Club, Tufts University, the Salem
Police, Youth Harbors/Rediscovery/JRI, South Bay Mental Health, Lifebridge,
Children’s Friend and Family Services, Think Kids-MGH, Lahey Behavioral Health.
SCCS has had individual students speak to prospective students and community
members for example, at the Rotary Club, through the CDC about SCCS.
3Eiii. Recruitment Goals For Specific Demographic Groups and 2014/15 Goals
The following strategies will be employed to increase our student body up to 60 by the beginning of the new school year (2014-2015). By
the end of this coming year our student body will increase to 70-80.
Demographic Group Goal
Special Education Students
Recruit and fill 20% of spaces
with this population.
2013/14 Strategies and Proposed Additions for 2014/15
Continue to foster a positive relationship with Salem special education
department and Margaret Marotta, Asst. Superintendent of Pupil Personnel
Engage with the newly formed Alternative Schools Team for Salem Public
Schools to ensure proper placement, transition and communication within the
Continue to work with Deb Connerty (Assistant to Sped Director) as a mentor
and Team Chair to improve our practice and help assure efficient
communication with district Special Ed members.
Continue to build and improve the courses available to Special Education
Continue to improve teacher and staff understanding of learning disabilities
and best practice to work with Special Education students.
Increased co-teaching with Special Education teachers and regular education
Increase peer observations and discussions of best practice.
Continue to make the school’s Special Education Coordinator and staff available
to families at open houses, during intake, and anytime by appointment, for
individual consultations and to describe resources available to serve students
specific needs.
LEP Students
Recruit and fill 10% of spaces
with this population
Students who are MCAS subproficient
Recruit and fill 10% of spaces
with this population.
Students at risk of dropping
out of school
Recruit and fill 25 % of spaces
with this population.
Continue to produce all recruitment materials in both English and Spanish, and
clearly state the risk factors we aim to serve, which includes students with
learning disibilities.
Recruiting from Point neighborhood using new Spanish language materials.
School adjustment counselors will increase collaboration with bilingual
guidance counselor, ELL teachers, adjustment counselors, and school
psychologist at district level through regular meetings and email/phone
All school materials will be available in English and Spanish.
Connecting with Salem pastors and ministers and having a bilingual staff
member attend services and speak to interested church members after the
Put words in Spanish onto main page of website and an obvious button for
accessing Spanish-language website
Spanish speaking staff available at all open houses and informational sessions
Follow up calls to Spanish speaking families by Spanish speaking staff
All letters sent out in both English and Spanish
Support second language acquisition around the outside-of-school tasks that
students need such as finding jobs and interviewing, managing health care and
government help systems.
Provide staff with extensive PD opportunities about supporting bilingual
students in the classroom
Continue to reach out to community organizations that serve non-English
speaking populations.
Translated copies of our recruitment materials have been left at adult ESL
programs in the community.
Continue general strategies.
Work with Salem Public Schools PPS department in the Alternative Team
meeting as well as Team Chairpersons monthly meeting to recruit appropriate
students for our school as well as assuring thoughtful transitions to other
schools as needed.
Promote the academic rigor of our program and its ability to help move students
into the proficient range through data driven information.
Include information about our tutoring and extra support services in our
recruitment materials.
The school will continue to post information that highlights our school’s
remedial strategies.
A link on our website posts the unique characteristics of our charter school and
the benefits to those students who may be in jeopardy of failing.
Our recruitment materials clearly state the services offered to students who are
sub-proficient including our social/emotional support services, and our
consistent support person/school communication polices and procedures.
 Continue to have regular meetings with the Principal, Vice Principal,
Headmasters and School Adjustment Counselors as well as the Program Director
of The Bridge Academy so we divert students to our school BEFORE they drop
 Continue to work with the Alternative Program Team and Special Education
Coordinators to aid in smooth transitions and to improve the districts
continuum of services through these discussions.
 Speak to summer school students and follow up with letters to their parents and
phone calls to them
 Continue to foster relationships with court officials, POs, and Salem police
 Strengthen relationships with new Bridge Program staff and Salem High
counselors through monthly SAC meetings.
 Continue involvement with Alternative Schools Team.
 Continue to demonstrate the potential for at risk students to find success here
through profiling these students in our recruitment materials, and including
these students as speakers during information sessions.
Homeless and Housing
Unstable Youth
Recruit and fill 10% of spaces
with this population.
Young Parents
Recruit and fill 10% of spaces
with this population.
Other subgroups of students
were targeted, specifically
LGBT youth and Court
Involved Youth.
Work with Journeys of Hope, Mass Coalition for the Homeless and other
regional agencies to develop supports for this young adult population.
Work with local media and the Boston Globe to publish information about this
population, highlighting SCCS as an option for these young adults.
Generate a list of withdrawn and students who have dropped out from Salem
High School over the last four years. Send out a mass mailing to any student on
that list under the age of 22.
Canvas neighborhoods with SCCS information(posters, flyers.)
Work with Catholic Charities and by coordinating with Salem High School
young parent program in conjunction with school nurse.
We will continue to actively recruit parenting or pregnant teens and will
advertise all the ways in which the school provides the necessary supports in
order for this subgroup to obtain educational success.
Students will continue to be given help in obtaining daycare vouchers through
the social work department.
We will establish systems for students who receive vouchers so that the
vouchers can be processed and paperwork submitted in a timely fashion.
We will also work closely with DCF workers who refer students who are
pregnant or parenting to our school.
Speak with the Gay, Straight Alliance Advisor from the high school. Speak with
NAGLY leaders. Encourage minority groups such as lesbian, gay, bisexual and
transgender as well as questioning youth who have had negative experiences at
school to apply and interview for SCCS.
Speak with child and youth lawyers in the area to recruit students who have felt
bullied or unsupported in traditional high schools.
Continue working with local counseling agencies (Childrens Friends and Family,
South Bay, Lahey Health) for referals
Continue participating in the Youth At Risk Conference
Continue partnership with individual outside therapy providers, Journeys of
Hope, and other agencies serving students with multiple risk factors
3F: Faithfulness to Charter: Retention
3Fi. Retention Summary
As the goal of Salem Community Charter school is to help students develop a regular school attendance habit, our attendance
rates can suffer—we don’t give up on students, and our decision to “bench” is based not only on their attendance, but also their
ability to complete competencies and other life necessities.
As students progress through Salem Community Charter School we continually raise our attendance expectations of them.
Due to our low student to teacher ratio, and the structures in place to foster meaningful relationships with students, Salem
Community Charter School is able to individualize our approach and motivate students to stay through difficult situations.
Even when not enrolled, former students at Salem Community Charter School know they can, and do, come back for continued
support. We offer students flexible scheduling which allows them to keep their foot in the door even as they balance work,
children, housing, and mental and physical health needs.
This year Salem Community Charter School was able to motivate student retention in many new ways. One major
accomplishment was strengthening both the system that is used to track student progress and the system in which their
progress is presented to them. Salem Community Charter School strengthened the ILP by ensuring that it is written in kidfriendly language that also reflects Bloom’s Taxonomy, MA state standards, and the Common Core. Salem Community Charter
School created supports to strengthen both the executive functioning of our school and that of our students. Through
conversations in advisory, town meeting, class, and one-on-one meetings, students were given a clear sense of what
competencies and benchmarks they need to complete to graduate, and the path to get there. Teachers and advisors work
closely along side students to track their individual progress. The staff and students at Salem Community Charter School
combined creatively to put competitions in place focused on improving individual students’ attendance, and the ability to track
their own attendance. At the end of each quarter, students choose classes for the upcoming quarter based on their needs to
reach the endpoint: graduation. The teaching staff implemented common practices including an agreed upon agenda system,
note-taking approaches, a writing system, and a tracking system. These common practices helped to create fluidity from class
to class for our students.
Instead of EducateK12, Salem Community Charter School began to implement JumpRope and we used several googledocs to
monitor systems’ progress. We also used googledocs to monitor students’ attendance, behavior, and competency completion.
Salem Community Charter School created clear systems for attendance monitoring and warning steps for when students were
absent from school or classes.
Salem Community Charter School also improved our clinical review process so that we could better track students’ mental
health needs, interventions, and progress. Through the creation of a clearer system for teachers and clinical staff to share
information, Salem Community Charter School was able to keep students in school through crises. The clinical review process
also helped ensure that no student fell through the cracks, as each student is discussed at least once a quarter by all staff.
Two specific high-risk populations that Salem Community Charter School focused on this year were: Homeless
unaccompanied youth and court-involved students. For our homeless students Salem Community Charter School has done
extensive case management and accompaniment with individual students, as well as engaged in activities to support this
subgroup on a macro level. Salem Community Charter School began a work group and partnered with several agencies and
programs to develop and greater amount of support and services. The long-range plan is to provide housing for this group
within the City of Salem. Salem Community Charter School now has an agreement with LifeBridge (a homeless shelter and
program in Salem) that any student 18 and older will be given shelter there when needed. Salem Community Charter School
has also begun discussions with Youth Harbors/Rediscovery to create housing opportunities to our students. Lastly, we have
sponsored The Haven Project in applying for a grant to expand homeless youth series in Salem through our school site.
Salem Community Charter School has supported court-involved students individually with many meetings with probation
officers, families, and support people. Salem Community Charter School has provided advocacy for these students in the court
ands with partner agencies (HAWK, DCF), and strengthened our relationship with the Salem Police (specifically the
Community Impact Unit) in order to support these students on a larger scale.
As predicted, our new school site has allowed us to engage students in new ways through the use of our ipads and a workshop
designed to maximize their utility. The new site has also allowed Salem Community Charter School to give students
opportunities to do individual work in small, quiet, spaces where they can study independently. The study rooms are
conducive to learning for many of our students with anxiety and learning disabilities. Although the kitchen expansion is not
complete, Salem Community Charter School has been able to further engage students through a culinary arts and hospitality
partnership with Journeys of Hope.
Below are two charts: the first is the report on the implementation of the 2013-2014 general plans. The second is the report on
the subgroup retention plans.
General Retention Activities and Progress Made
Planned Activities
Activity #1:
Competency Based Instruction
and Assessments
 Develop stronger advisory
curriculum and tracking systems to
communicate with students about
their academic progress.
 Implement EducateK12 for
students so they can check on their
 We developed some curriculum for advisory based on our essential habits
competencies, which are based on the MA State frameworks for Health and the Common
Core. We plan on teaching essential habits in workshops next year.
We also created various tracking systems to communicate academic progress to
students, including regular ILP days, where students could check with teachers on their
mastery of required and choice competencies. We also made charts for students with
the list of competencies that they completed and needed to work on and helped them to
choose appropriate classes to aid their progress. We regularly discussed student
progress in clinical review and student support meetings and shared these results with
progress daily.
 Train parents on EducateK12 by
spring of 2014 to increase
communication between home and
school regarding student progress.
Activity #2:
Individual Learning Plans
 Develop stronger advisory
curriculum and tracking systems to
communicate with students about
their academic progress.
 Implement EducateK12 for
students so they can check on their
progress daily.
Activity #3:
Wrap-Around Services
 Implement intervention system for
 We began to develop stronger advisory curricula based on the essential habits
 We did not implement EducateK12 (see above), but we did hold regular ILP days to look
at student progress. We also looked at progress during advisory (4 times a week.)
 We focused on holding Collaborative Problem Solving meetings with students who were
struggling to make progress through their ILP in order to effectively intervene on an
individual basis according to the students’ needs.
 We were able to increase our intervention and outreach efforts through additional
students with addiction issues.
families and support people.
 Increase outreach efforts to
Activity #4:
Family Engagement
 Continue with this established
future graduates and strengthen
relationships with North Shore
Community College and the
TRIO/EOC program. Review,
reflect, revise capstone as needed.
 Develop stronger advisory
curriculum and tracking systems to
communicate with students about
their academic progress.
 We held family nights each quarter of the school year, as well as an open house/ribbon
cutting ceremony when we moved into the new space.
 We did not continue to use EducateK12 but will use JumpRope to supplement our
 We made home visits as well as visits to group homes where some of our students
communication between home and
school regarding student progress.
 Make home visits a higher priority
in the coming school year.
 Publish all outreach and
recruitment materials in Spanish
 New Website
 Create a standardized process for
staffing-- one MSW intern and one school psychology intern, involving the
paraprofessionals, and strengthening relationships with outside service providers.
We increased outreach to families and support people through family nights, family
counseling meetings, phone calls, visits, and emails.
We created various intervention systems-- we hired a consultant to help with substance
abuse issues, we conducted searches of students suspected to be using or dealing, we
connected students to outside counseling services. We held meetings with support
people including parole officers, coaches, outside therapists, parents, friends,
boyfriends, girlfriends, cousins, and mentors.
We created systems for tracking services needed by students and ensuring that clinical
staff followed up on providing the needs of students.
We took students to get clothing, helped them with housing applications, helped them
find work, get social security benefits, find outside therapists, get health insurance, find
doctors, find physical therapists, and get food.
communication next year.
 Train parents to increase
Activity #5:
Individualized Transition and
Post-grad planning
students in advisories, one on one meetings, and consultation sessions with clinical staff
and teachers.
We did not implement EducateK12, but we did begin to use JumpRope. The student
portal feature will be available next school year.
We provided feedback to parents at family open houses and in meetings with clinical
and teacher staff members. JumpRope will be available for them to access next year.
reside. In addition, we held various meetings with family members and outside
We published materials in Spanish.
We created a new website which is readable in Spanish and English.
 We had a graduate from the NSCC TRIO program as a social work intern at our school.
She has agreed to be a contact for us at a partner agency moving forward. We have
continued to build relationships with North Shore Community College.
We have reviewed and revised capstone to better reflect the needs of our student
We developed some curricula for advisory. We developed more efficient ILP days to
track progress.
Activity #6:
Workplace Exposure and Job
Skills Training
 SCCS will add a third internship
opportunity (culinary/retail) for
Improve internship offerings
through increased collaboration
between YMCA staff, SCCS staff and
YouthBuild staff and joint staff
training opportunities.
Refine the curriculum and
competencies in all internship
programs using the national
YouthBuild curriculum as a model.
Explore creating an online version
of the Mass WorkBased Learning
Plan that students and employers
can access remotely and that can
help us collect necessary data.
New students will be assessed on
skills rubric at entry and then at the
end of each quarter to measure
their employability level and
progress towards competence.
Activity #7:
Advisory and Town Meeting
 A small workgroup of staff will
Activity #8:
Staff Selection
 Mentors will be assigned to new
Increase role clarity by writing
comprehensive job descriptions
for each staff member in the
coming year, with particular focus
on delineating the purview of all
Activity #9:
Targeted Workshops
 Strengthen RTI assessments and
course offerings.
Changes in the SCCS schedule will
allow for increased small group
 SCCS staff spent one PD in August 2013 reviewing the purpose and process of our Town
create advisory and town meeting
curriculum for the 2013-2014
school year that will connect with
non-cognitive competencies.
 Develop goals and curriculum
specific to Town Meeting and
increase opportunities to work
towards or demonstrate
competencies in this forum.
SCCS has created Hospitality program for students to explore and learn what it takes to
be working in a kitchen/professional atmosphere. The hospitality piece is taught and
learned in the classroom, while the kitchen hands on aspect is taught at Journey’s of
Hope kitchen.
Internship offerings continue to be a big component of our school. Say Media with the
YMCA, YouthBuild with the Salem CDC and Kitchen 101/Hospitality with Journey’s of
Hope. Collaborations with local businesses has improved with our students being
employed through Salem Cinema, Salem Main Streets, and the Salem DPW.
Curriculum and competencies have adopted the national YouthBuild curriculum as a
model for all work based internship programs.
A hard copy of the Mass WorkBased Learning Plan is still in use for Say Media,
YouthBuild and all independent employment. Creating an online version is still in the
exploratory stage.
New students who have entered World of Work have completed the
Employment/Safety/Community skills rubric at the beginning of the quarter and at the
end. This will assist in determining their employability level and progress towards the “I
am Professional” competence.
First CDC/Charter School YouthBuild partnership in Massachusetts.
Ongoing partnerships with the Salem Rotary club has provided mentors for each
student in their fields of interest and assists them with professional preparation.
Innovative partnerships with Habitat for Humanity North Shore provides construction
experience as well as one-on-one training with students.
100% of YouthBuild graduates have been placed into employment or post secondary
57% of students have received their 10hour OSHA Certification.
78% of students have completed or are on the verge of completing the YouthBuild
70% of students have improved two grade levels in reading and math.
26% of students hold leadership positions in their communities.
Meeting. The staff established best practices and norms for TM that were implemented
this year.
We created town meeting curriculum in our leadership team and connected town
meeting to the essential habits competencies.
We created some curriculum for advisory which was shared among staff and will be
used for teaching essential habits in workshops next year.
We did create opportunities to earn benchmark evidence in town meetings and set
explicit agendas and helped students to write out evidence forms to connect their action
in town meeting to academic progress.
 Matt Conroy and Lindsay LaRusso were assigned as mentor teachers to the new staff
members. They received training from the district and met every week with staff.
 Coordinators wrote job descriptions at the beginning of the year and shared these with
all staff members during all staff orientation.
 Weekly new staff support meetings were led by Jess Yurwitz, SCCS principal
 Purchased and began training with Scholastic Assessment Suite to evaluate and track
RTI progress. Reading Plus has been expanded to be provided to all students. TCM
materials have been presented to and used by Academic Support Staff. Individual
Academic plans have been increasingly created and tracked for students.
Altered schedule and new space have provided students with the ability to work in
small groups or individually for extended periods of time.
tutoring and longer two hour
blocks of independent, focused
work time for competency
practice and development.
Activity #10:
Progress Monitoring and
 Establish a standardized
therapeutic clinical review process
and tracking system for therapeutic
 Collaborate with EducateK12 staff
to develop the case management
side of the software program to
track overall student stability and
social service needs.
 Develop stronger advisory
curriculum and tracking systems to
communicate with students about
their academic progress.
 We established a standardized clinical review process where we met weekly and
discussed each student at least once per quarter. We used various tracking systems for
monitoring efficacy, including jumprope, google docs, and clinical notes. The clinical
team also met regularly for group supervision, where we discussed high risk students
and reflected on their needs and our interventions.
As we did not continue to use EducateK12, we used JumpRope and google docs to track
student stability and social service needs.
We developed some advisory curricula but need to work more on essential habits
curricula in the upcoming year.
We strengthened our ILP process and the way that we communicate progress to
students through ILP days and
Retention Activities For Specific Demographic Groups, Goals and Progress Made
Goals and Strategies for 2013/14
Retain 70%
 Create videos explaining all SPED
regulations, processes, expectations and
supports that will be available on the
SCCS website for students and parents.
 Translation into Spanish on the website
will be available.
 Improvements in programming
including adding Wilson programming,
individualized Academic support plans
and programs, new iPad technology for
individual skills building.
 Full implementation of the new Student
Study System that was put in place in
spring of 2013.
 Academic Support Classes individualized
based on student needs.
 Special Ed tutors/para’s trained and
assigned to each IEP student for push-in
 Improved and additional differentiation
training for teachers through Academic
Support Coordinator.
 Improvements to communication with
parents/guardians/students through
online services including links to videos
explaining the IEP process and all
Special Education services available
specific to SCCS.
Implementation Report
SCCS Retained 77% of this population
 Due to changes in the staffing of the Say Media
program and challenges to implementing the website
videos have not yet been developed.
 Translation into Spanish is currently available on the
 Wilson programming has taken place every quarter
this year, primarily using the Just Words program in
small groups. Individual Academic Support Plans
have been created for many students, but particularly
students who are struggling academically but are not
eligible for an IEP or 504 Plans. New iPad technology
is still being rolled out to students.
 Student Study System fully implemented.
 Academic Support Classes have moved towards focus
on specific students competency completion needs
and their learning needs as well as a clear focus upon
executive function.
 Tutors and paraprofessionals have worked with the
coordinator to identify specific students whom they
are responsible for tracking and assisting in classes.
 Differentiation and accommodation training has
mostly taken place in one on one meetings. This is an
area for continued growth.
 Communication with parents has improved, however
the online communication tools are not yet viable and
communication with families and parents can
continue to grow.
LEP Students
Retain 85% of this population.
 Updated ILP which includes a second
language-based competency for LEP
students to have their second language
education be a part of their progression
towards a diploma.
 Using apps on computers and iPads to
bolster English language literacy.
Connections with community agencies
that provide English language classes.
 Engage in bilingual relationships with
staff as often as possible.
Student Eligible
for Free or
Reduced Lunch
Retain 65% of this population.
 Breakfast and lunch services will
continue to be provided. Food service
work programs and more cooking
classes will be provided in the new
Students who
are subproficient in the
Retain 65% of this population.
 MCAS Boost classes will continue to be
 Recruit volunteer tutors to work with
students during workshop classes.
 Recruit students to participate in 1:1
 Offer testing practice classes and
relaxation strategies
 Increase staff understanding of special
education through bi-monthly PD
sessions and weekly intervention
 Redesigned RTI system including
additional resources for intervention
and progress monitoring.
Students at risk
of dropping out
of school
Retain 65% of this population.
 Targeted behavior interventions by
Student Support team. Providing warm,
safe, supportive environment through
advisory system, challenge by choice
philosophy, field trips, family dinners,
town meeting.
Students who
have dropped
out of school
Retain 65% of this population.
 Provide comprehensive assessment and
case management services through
Student Support dept including a new
social work intern.
SCCS Retained 60% of this population.
 We transitioned one LEP student to a young parent’s
GED program which better suited her schedule and
needs and one LEP student to full time work. The
remaining LEP students are still enrolled and active
in our school community.
 We updated our ILP to include a second languagebased competency, began to use ipad apps to bolster
literacy, and engaged in bilingual relationships with
three staff members.
 We added to our ELL curriculum significantly
including creating opportunities for ELL students to
present their learning orally through presentations to
a specifically selected staff group.
 Improved ELL student use of Reading Plus and online
comprehension and fluency program designed with
ELL students in mind.
 Created writing classes designed with ELL students
specifically in mind, through which two of our ELL
students added content to our Website.
SCCS retained 73% of this population.
 We continued to provide breakfast and lunch and
began a hospitality program in conjunction with
Journeys of Hope.
SCCS Retained 65% of this population
 We offered MCAS Boost classes, one on one tutoring,
practice classes, relaxation strategies.
 We provided paraprofessionals, tutors, and teachers
for MCAS preparation instead of volunteers
 Matt Conroy held regular meetings with staff to
increase skills related to teaching students on IEPs.
Explicit training sessions in this area were not as
successful as would be preferred. Specific time for
these trainings will be included into the professional
development schedule in future.
 New RTI system purchased, tested, and ready to be
rolled out in September.
SCCS Retained 73% of this population
 All of our students are in this category. We used
targeted interventions and all of the strategies
SCCS Retained 73% of this population
 We were able to provide extensive case management
services through our social work intern, securing
housing, food stamps, health insurance, and work for
several students. With the help of our school
psychology intern, we were able to assess all new
students upon entry to SCCS using the BASC-2
behavioral rating scales. This information was used to
address clinical needs immediately upon entry to the
school. We tracked the needs of students and the
obstacles to their staying in school and addressed
these in a systematic way.
Homeless and
Unstable Youth
Retain 85% of this population through
intensive case management, clothes and
other supplies as needed, Charlie cards for
transportation, partnerships with other
 Increase staff understanding of
homelessness through bi-monthly PD
sessions and weekly intervention
Young Parents
Retain 85% of this population through
parent groups on-site as needed, case
management, advocacy, and collaboration
with Catholic Charities.
SCCS retained 75%
 We provided intensive case management, trips to
Beverly Bootstraps to buy clothing with vouchers
from Journeys of Hope, Charlie cards, and continued
to strengthen our partnership with Journeys of Hope
and the MA Coalition for the Homeless. We created a
task force to address homelessness for 18-25 year old
youth on the North Shore.
 We increased staff awareness during weekly clinical
review meetings and in our PD sessions. We had an
article written in the Boston Globe about homeless
students, increasing awareness in the area and
support to the students in our school, which was
motivating to them.
SCCS retained 75% of this population; one student was
transitioned to a GED young parent program which
better suited her needs. We did a lot of case management
and advocacy, including helping young parents find
counseling support, housing, childcare, and food in order
to be able to keep coming to school.
Retention Activities For 2014/15
Overall Retention Goal for 2014/15: 65% Retention
Demographic Group
Special Education Students
LEP Students
Student Eligible for Free or
Goals and Strategies
Retain 70% of this population
Continue strengthening relationship with district and other specialty school in district to ensure
that our school is meeting the needs of students and that students are properly placed in our
Continue PD sessions with staff about learning and mental health disorders affecting student
Continue offering 1:1 learning opportunities, boost classes, and differentiated instruction.
Improve family communication through use of the website.
Improve engagement in IEP creation and writing process through Academic Support
coursework in order to create a more informed student base.
Continue to develop Competency Development Opportunities where students are able to focus
on their strengths rather than their areas of challenge.
Retain 60% of this population
Continue to foster bilingual relationships with bilingual staff members and bilingual students
Recruit more LEP students (so that there is a larger cohort of students receiving English
language support)
Support second language acquisition around the outside-of-school tasks that students need
such as finding jobs and interviewing, managing health care and govenrment help systems.
Provide staff with extensive PD opportunities about supporting bilingual students in the
Retain 70% of this population.
Reduced Lunch
Students who are MCAS subproficient
Students at risk of dropping
out of school
Students who have dropped
out of school
Homeless and Housing
Unstable Youth
Young Parents
Food service work programs and more cooking classes will be provided in the new space.
Build the kitchen so that more nutritious food can be prepared and offered
Continue to offer breakfast, lunch, and snacks to all students
Special foods as incentives for attendance, competency completion
Retain 60% of this population.
One-on-one tutoring sessions
Create opportunities for peer tutoring
Practice MCAS exams
Tracking academic progress regularly through Scholastic Assessment Suite.
Continue to combine academic skill building with mindfulness and stress reduction strategies
for test taking.
Increase student awareness of and opportunity to choose from Competency Development
Opportunities which allow them to prepare for specific MCAS tests which they still require.
Retain 70% of this population.
Targeted behavior interventions by Student Support team. Providing warm, safe, supportive
environment through advisory system, challenge by choice philosophy, field trips, family
dinners, town meeting.
Continue strengthening relationships with police and POs in area
Include specific questions about what didn’t work for them in previous education settings in
admissions/orientation process and share this information with all staff at the start of each
Ask for narrative reports on incoming students from Salem High teachers and counselors and
any other collaterals
Use JumpRope consistently to track behavior and attendance issues and interventions
Strengthen weekly clinical review process to monitor interventions and share information
Teach essential habits skills during workshop times to give students the non-cognitive skills
they need to participate effectively in a learning community
Continue calling and texting students regularly
Retain 70% of with this population.
Provide comprehensive assessment and case management services through Student Support
dept including a new social work intern.
Create schedules which allow students to ease back into school-day routines with flexible
learning options and on-line possibilities
Connect students work (at outside jobs) time to employment competencies explicitly from the
start so that students see progress on their ILP
Ensure that all students have their ILPs updated even if they miss ILP day and that this is
shared with them by their advisors so that they see progress.
Continue to provide students with counseling and case management support
Ask for narrative reports on incoming students from Salem High teachers, counselors, any other
Strengthen focus on engaging support people of incoming students so that there is back-up to
call or meet with from the start
Retain 70% of this population.
Increase case management, including clothes and other supplies as needed, Charlie cards for
transportation, partnerships with other agencies.
Increase staff understanding of homelessness through bi-monthly PD sessions and weekly
intervention meetings.
Continue to strengthen the task force started in 2013-2014
Ensure transportation through the district
Retain 70% of this population.
Start parent groups on-site as needed, case management, and advocacy
Create an “I am Organized” workshop class for young parents (and others) to have an
opportunity to learn budgeting and time management skills essential to balancing school
and family (and oftentimes work).
Offer a wider array of flexible learning options including on-line classes
Continue to offer support with finding childcare through Catholic Charities
Build better collaboration with the childcares center at Salem High School
Students with addiction
Retain 50% of this population.
 Continue reinforcing the connection between sobriety and school progress
 Offer outside counseling
 Accompany students to NA and AA meetings
3G: Faithfulness to Charter: Dissemination
Common Criteria #4:
The school provides innovative
models for replication and best
practices to other public schools
in the district where the charter
school is located.
 SCCS staff met regularly with Salem High School leadership team and counselors to
share both student information and intervention ideas.
 The SCCS Board now includes two members of the Salem Public School leadership
team, Margaret Marotta (Asst. Superintendent of Salem) and Andrew Wolf
(Curriculum Coordinator at Salem High). This promotes ongoing dissemination of
ideas and natural collaborations between SCCS staff and Salem Public Schools.
 SCCS staff participated in conferences both local and national.
 SCCS staff presented at the North Shore Youth At Risk Conference this year for the first
time. The session was attended by over 50 participants and elicited positive
responses, multiple referrals and requests for additional information about our
educational and intervention practices.
 SCCS staff coordinated a regional working group to address the problem of young
adult homelessness on the North Shore. This group met three times this past year and
included over 15 members from a variety of governmental and social service agencies.
 The SCCS principal met twice with the leaders of Salem Academy Charter School to
discuss best practices and the possibility of collaborating more in the coming year.
4. Success of the Academic Program
4A. Success of the Academic Program: Accountability Plan
The SCCS Accountability Plan does not include specific measures to assess the success of our academic programming. SCCS is
too small to legally publish our MCAS results, however as SCCS implements the Jumprope System more fully over the coming
year, our staff will develop academic tracking systems and growth measures that are appropriate for a competency based
school and manageable within the Jumprope system.
4B. Success of the Academic Program: Charter School Common Performance Criteria
Common Criteria #5:
Student Performance
The school consistently meets state
student performance standards for
academic growth, proficiency, and
college and career readiness.
Curriculum: SCCS has completed the task of developing an Individual Learning Plan (ILP)
specific to the school, its population, and student need.
The SCCS ILP now contains 33 complete Competencies, each with associated
Benchmarks and Learning Targets. Learning Targets are specific to each Mastery
Level in order to help staff and students calibrate where students are in completing a
SCCS Competencies are now based on and aligned with the Common Core Standards,
Massachusetts State Standards, and Next Generation Science standards.
Common standards for rigor and competency completion were determined by the
SCCS staff and assessments systems established.
Courses are created and their curriculum designed based on these competencies and
Teachers meet with the Academic Support Coordinator and Curriculum Coordinator
regularly to review unit and lesson plans both to assist with innovative planning and
to be certain that curriculum is properly aligned with the ILP.
Instruction: SCCS staff co-created instructional best practices during Professional
Development opportunities led, in part, by Landmark Outreach Program. These common
practices included, but are not limited to:
Agenda design and use
Writing system (Collins)
Note-taking practice (Two Column Notes)
Understanding that students are expected to read, write, speak, and listen in each
Time-tracking system (Mid-Point Warning)
Approach to problem solving academic challenges and behavioral issues (Think:Kids)
Reading comprehension strategies.
Assessment and Program Evaluation: SCCS began using the TABE(Test of Adult Basic
Education) last year and have continued to use this as an entrance exam to determine
students general level of academic skills. This program was intended to be used as a
progress monitoring tool until we moved into our new space and were therefore able to
begin to use the Scholastic Achievement Suite which includes Scholastic Math Inventory,
Scholastic Reading Inventory and Scholastic Phonics Inventory. Unfortunately the TABE has
proved to be a very challenging tool to use in this manner and we are moving fully into the
use of the Scholastic Achievement Suite for our progress monitoring for individual students.
MCAS: Our sample size is, unfortunately, too small to use our students MCAS scores
in a publishable report. An internal review of our students’ progress on the MCAS by
the department will show significant improvement on the part of our students as
compared to their previous testing opportunities.
Reading Plus: Reading Plus is an online reading comprehension and fluency program
which the we have implemented as a Competency Development Opportunity for all
students. This data-driven research-based program has proven very productive for
Common Criteria #6:
Program Delivery
The school delivers an academic
program that provides improved
academic outcomes and
educational success for all
Common Criteria #7:
Culture and Family Engagement
The school supports students’
social and emotional health in a
safe and respectful learning
environment that engages families.
all of the students who have engaged with the program effectively. 84% of students
at SCCS have engaged in the program enough for their progress to be considered
statistically relevant. Of these students the average improvement in reading grade
level over the course of this school year has been 2.55 grade levels. Clearly this
improvement, while measured by Reading Plus is also a factor of direct instruction in
reading strategies and simple practice from students who may have been disengaged
from school for years. Another factor which Reading Plus is able to track very
effectively is reading rate in words per minute(wpm). Our students have improved
drastically in this area in general. The percent change is 42.11% in wpm over the
course of this school year.
Benchmark Completion: The final data set we use to determine students success
rates at SCCS is their Benchmark completion rate. This year students earned a total
of 3,276 total Benchmarks, which are measures of growth in our 33 competency
areas. In breaking down the numbers, students earn 57.5 Benchmarks per student.
This demonstrates quite clearly that our students are making significant progress
through SCCS’s rigorous academic program.
Program Delivery Summary
SCCS provides multiple supports for diverse learners in its programming, curriculum, and
 SCCS created a common lesson plan template that requires teachers to plan
accommodations and modifications specifically for diverse learners.
 Teachers meet each week with the Academic Support Coordinator to discuss
challenges and strategies for approaching these types of learners as well as to improve
specific practices in planning and execution of their lessons.
 These meetings with the Academic Support Coordinator also provide opportunities for
instructing teachers and staff in the multiple disabilities our students exhibit.
 All students in our school with IEP’s receive the MCAS accommodations agreed to in
their IEP team meeting throughout all assessments at SCCS.
 In regard to earning Benchmarks, our method of tracking academic growth and noting
progress for students, the average number of Benchmarks earned for the school was
57.5. The average number of Benchmarks earned for Special Education students was
62 per student and for our ELL population it was 94 per student. This clearly displays
that our curriculum and structures are effectively supporting both Special Education
and ELL students.
 SCCS provides programming for students representing a vast amount of social,
emotional, personal and academic diversity
 SCCS students also exhibit academic skill at all levels from 2nd grade math skills to
college level reading skill with a wide array of academic challenges. Our mission is to
support these diverse learners through flexible scheduling, extensive support services
and individualized educational planning. We have done this in the following ways this
Offered a variety of flexible school schedules (part, full and extended day)
Established an independent study system
Made improvements to the two sheltered employment programs SCCS offers
(YouthBuild and SayMedia) and began planning to add a third retail/culinary
option in 2014.
Offered academic programming in a variety of configurations: large group
classes (1:17), small classes (1:10), tiny classes and tutoring (1:5), individual
tutoring (1:1).
Provided both push-in and pull-out special education and ELL services
Offered advisory classes and therapeutic classes (i.e. Mindfulness) to help
students develop social and emotional skills.
Supported the development of engaging, hands-on lessons that focus on the
development of higher order thinking skills through weekly PD sessions and
1:1 coaching for teachers.
 Developed tiered support program and associated school schedule that allows all
students to access the level of academic support they feel they need, when they need it.
 March 2014 we moved into our new space.
 We had five public and family engagement activities throughout the year that were very
well attended (one ribbon cutting and four graduation/awards ceremonies)
 For students who are under the age of 18, we have a meeting with Parents/Guardians
to do an initial intake, which includes a meeting with one of our clinicians and tour of
the school. This meeting is offered in English or Spanish, whichever is the primary
language spoken at home.
 For students over the age of 18, we respectfully request they provide us with contact
information for support persons at home. (family by origin or family by choice).
 We provide individualized counseling for students as needed or wanted.
 We provide family counseling and support for those in need.
 We work collaboratively with other agencies to provide social services to our students.
 Our support is individualized to each student’s level of need, we work collaboratively
with their support team at home to problem solve ways to ensure their success in
 This year we developed our curriculum in our essential habits competencies to help our
students acquire skills that can be used in all aspects of their lives. (I am organized, I am
sensible, I am insightful, I am mindful)
 We provide intensive case management to students that are in DCF custody, or are
dealing with homelessness.
 We have put a lot of work into finding different housing opportunities for our homeless
students this year and will continue to partner with organizations on the North Shore to
work to solve this problem.
4C. Success of the Academic Program: Academic Priorities for 2014/15 School Year
Students at SCCS all receive an Individualized Learning Plan (ILP) upon entrance. As students progress through the school,
teachers certified in the appropriate Academic subject areas award Benchmarks to students once those Benchmarks have
been mastered. One data point that SCCS uses in order to describe student achievement is average number of benchmarks
Over the 2013-2014 school year, the average SCCS student earned 57.5 Benchmarks. Special Education
students earned 62 Benchmarks, on average. English Language Learners earned 94 Benchmarks, on average.
The process of using Benchmarks earned in order to track progress was made possible by the
implementation of the SCCS ILP and the Jumprope Data System during the 2013-2014 school year.
In order to make the process of earning benchmarks a systemic part of the school, SCCS also began using “ILP Days,” when
students come into the building and meet with every teacher in order to reflect on what they have accomplished and have
their ILPs filled in, go over progress reports in order to discuss what they are working on currently, and think about what
classes they need to take in the coming quarters. These ILP Days are often followed by Advisory academic goal-setting.
Another important addition to our school that aids in identifying academic priorities is the development and universal use of
the “HAS/WORKING ON/NEEDS” chart. Students fill in three-column worksheets with Competencies that they have, are
working on, or need. In this way, students and staff have a clear visual of what types of courses need to be offered, how many
students need which competencies, which competencies seem to take the longest to get, etc.
Given that this is a newer piece of information, there is not enough longitudinal data with which to make conclusive
statements. We expect that this will be possible in a year or two. Knowing, however, which competencies students are
working on or need has helped us to realize, as a staff, that we need to move towards a system in which there are a greater
number of co-taught and cross-curricular classes. Additionally, once the students identify their own needs, they are able to
become consumers of their own education and begin helping us to build Competency Development Opportunities (CDOs).
Academic Priorities for SY 2014-2015
The data from SY 2013-2014 has led to several academic priorities for SY 2014-2015. Several of these priorities are
continuations of the priorities we have focused on in the last year. Priorities include:
Increase the number of student designed Competency Development Opportunities (CDOs)
Increase the consistency with which students design their own schedule
Fully implement the Collins Writing Method across curricular areas
Increase the number of co-taught and cross-curricular courses
Improve benchmark tracking and goal setting for students and move towards an online version of the ILP
Develop student portfolio standards
Design more courses aimed at specific sub-groups within our school population
Develop common presentation of learning norms.
We will be implementing the Scholastic Assessment Program in order to track the efficacy of our instruction on a
regular basis.
5. Organizational Viability
5A: Organizational Viability: Accountability Plan
The SCCS Accountability Plan does not include specific measures to assess the success of our organizational viability.
5B: Organizational Viability: Complaints
SCCS did not receive any written complaints during the 2013/14 school year.
5C: Organizational Viability: Budget and Finance
Cash and cash equivalents………………………………………………………………………………………………
Capital assets, net of accumulated depreciation………………………………………
TOTAL ASSETS…………………………………………………………………………………..
Accrued payroll……………………………………………………………………………
Compensated Absences……………………………………….………………………………………………………
TOTAL LIABILITIES……………………………………………………………………………….
Net investment in capital assets…………………………………………………………………..……………………
Restricted for grants…………………………………………………………………………………………………………
TOTAL NET POSITION……………………………………………………………………………
City contribution…………………………………………………………………………..……………………………
Contracted services………………………………………………………………………………
Office supplies and materials………………………………………………………….
Instructional supplies…………………………………………….…………………………………………………..
Building rental…………………………….……………………………………………………………
Other expenses……………………………………………………………………………
Total operating income expenses…………………………………………………..
Operating income (loss)………………………………………………………….
Net position at beginning of year..............………………………………………………
Net position at end of year………………………………………………………………
SCCS FY15 Budget (5.25.14)
Reflects costs increases to grow to 80 students by May 2015
Sub-Total Level Service
ADDs to
STIPENDS (Registrar and Student Stipends)
including paras over
FY 2015
Total Non-Personnel
Total FY15 SCCS
5D: Organizational Viability: Organizational Structure
SCCS did not make any changes to the organizational structure of the school during the 2013/14 school year.
6. Additional Information
6A: Link to SCCS Demographic Information
# of students
% of the student body
Native American
Native Hawaiian, Pacific Islander
Multi-race, non-Hispanic
Special education
Limited English proficient
Low income
6B: SCCS Administrative Roster
Name, Title
Brief Job Description
Jessica Yurwitz,
Start date
Head of School, Instructional Leader
End date
April 2010
6C: SCCS Staff Attrition
Number as of the last
day of the 2013/14
school year
Departures during
the 2013/14 school
Departures at
the end of the
school year
Reason(s) for Departure
1- Moved out of the area
1- Needed Full Time
1- Para moved out of state
1- Tutor completed a degree
program and left to get a full time
teaching job
6D: SCCS Board Members
# of terms
Finance and
July 1, 2012 – June 30, 2014
Governance and
March 1, 2011 – June 30, 2015
July 1, 2012 – June 30, 2015
March 1, 2011 –June 30, 2015
Mr. James Lister
Director of Plummer Home
Finance and
July 1, 2012 – June 30, 2014
Ms. Lucy Corchado
Staff Assistant Department of
Student Life at Salem State
July 1, 2013 – June 30, 2014
Mr. Tom Torello
Vice President of Marketing and
Communications at Salem State
Sept. 13, 2013 - June 30, 2016
School Committee
Ms. Margaret Marotta
Assistant Superintendent of
Student Support Services – Salem
Public Schools
Dec. 12, 2013 – June 30, 2016
Andrew Wulf
Academic Chair of Curriculum
Salem High School
March 12, 2014 – March 12,
Kylie Sullivan
Director of Salem Main Streets
March 12, 2014 – March 12,
Dr. Edward Bailey
Chair of Pediatrics
Mass General for Children
Dr. Neal DeChillo
Dean of the College of Health and
Human Services at Salem State
Position on
the Board
Vice Chair
Ms. Linda Saris
Director of Salem Cyber Space
Atty. Jonathan Ofilos
Tinti, Quinn, Grover and Frey
Ms. Deborah Amaral
Salem School Committee
Representative/ Director
Malden YMCA
Length of each term (including
date of election and expiration)
Sept. 13, 2013-June 30, 2015
6E: Key Leadership Changes
Name and Contact Information of
Board of Trustees Chairperson
Charter School Leader
Assistant Charter School Leader
Special Education Director
MCAS Test Coordinator
SIMS Coordinator
English Language Learner Director
Will Change. Replacement TBD.
6F: Facilities
On March 17, 2014, SCCS moved into a larger school space on the second floor of the Museum Place Mall, Salem MA.
6G: Enrollment
SCCS has a rolling admissions process to better serve the target population of the school. SCCS recruits and accepts
applications throughout the year. Before the start of each term, the staff determines how many seats are available in the
school and hold a lottery if the number of applications exceed the number of seats available for the term. As SCCS is actively
growing, we anticipate accepting students at the start of each new quarter.
7. Report on Conditions
Progress Report on Conditions
The school provides evidence to
meet all conditions in a timely
SCCS made significant progress this year towards addressing each of the conditions
placed on its charter. We anticipate having the conditions removed at the start of the
2014/15 school year.
Condition #1:
Forward all Board documents to CSO on a monthly basis.
This condition has been MET. SCCS is submitting all required documents to the CSO in
a timely manner. The school submitted all information for the Coordinated Program
Review in a timely manner for the 6 year review.
SCCS underwent a federal grants audit this year without any findings.
Condition #2:
Submit a Detailed Facility Safety and Development Plan by May 31st 2013
This condition has been MET. SCCS submitted a detailed facility plan and the
associated timetable by May 31st. The ESE will continue to follow up with the board
and school leaders to ensure the facility plan is on schedule.
Condition #3A:
Provide Documentation of an Effective Attendance System by June 30th 2013
This condition has been MET. SCCS submitted a comprehensive attendance and
security plan that includes systems for tracking students, staff and visitors. Thiese
plans included:
Implementation of the new Jumprope attendance, behavior and competency
tracking system.
Installation of security equipment and cameras at all access points.
Clear attendance reporting and tracking systems for students on and off
Condition #3B:
Demonstrate Alignment of SCCS Systems and Policies with Mass State Laws by June 30 th
This condition has been MET. SCCS submitted a detailed explanation of how staff track
time on learning (TOL) in the competency based environment. This plan is based on
guidance from the ESE on educational alternatives, and includes revisions to the
following SCCS policies and procedures:
1. Attendance Policy
2. Open Campus Policy
Condition #4:
Demonstrate Faithful Implementation of the Key Elements of the SCCS Charter, including
the community based work program, by December 31st 2013.
 SCCS had a positive Year Three Site Visit and showed large gains in all areas over
the Year Two Site Visit.
SCCS has implemented the majority of Key Charter Elements and implemented nearly
all of the Stage Three and many of the Stage Four Competency Development Progress
report. SCCS is now operating three sheltered employment opportunities in
collaboration with three different community agencies.
8. Appendix
SCCS Competency Development Progress Report
July 2014
Coding Key:
Stage One: First Steps
Staff understands what a competency and a benchmark are
Students understand what a competency is
Staff understands Bloom’s Taxonomy and can apply it to their lesson and unit plans
Staff can apply Bloom’s Taxonomy to the creation of competencies and benchmarks
Teachers determine the biggest units of learning (the infamous competency chunk) in each discipline
Teachers begin to divide up chunks into competencies and differentiate them from benchmarks
Core competencies are developed for each of the five disciplines (first full draft)
Staff determine how competencies will be leveled from beginner to expert (Level 1-4)
Stage Two: Preparing for Implementation
The profile of a school graduate is defined in order to determine the competency requirements, and the
required benchmarks within each competency
Teachers can identify the competencies in current courses and create lesson and unit plans that align with
these competencies
Teachers can identify the benchmarks in a course, unit and lesson
Staff understands the different cognitive and non-cognitive learning domains and can create competencies
that align with those domains – avoiding double jeopardy for students.
Staff determine the appropriate level of granularity at SCCS for classes, competencies, benchmarks,
learning targets & assessments
Staff research and select remediation and support programs (both online and paper) that align with SCCS
SCCS chooses a technological platform for assessment (EducateK12) and aligns the granularity of SCCS
competencies to this structure
Report cards reflect individual progress towards competencies versus points, grade averages or simply a list
of benchmarks earned.
Common competencies are developed that all staff will teach and assess
Student orientation program includes a primer on competency based education
Graduation requirements are identified based on common and discipline specific competencies—the
charter identifies a minimum of 75% of competences as a graduation threshold.
The portion of benchmarks needed to complete each competency are established
Guidelines are developed to make all SCCS competencies and benchmarks uniform in style, format, tone,
language, and level of granularity.
All competencies and benchmarks are revised according to these guidelines.
Staff test and gather feedback (from both students and staff) on the final drafts and implementation of
The competencies and benchmarks are input into EducateK12
During a student’s first quarter at SCCS, staff determine his/her competency level based on student test
scores, past and current work samples, intake data and academic profile
Stage Three: Implementing
Competencies and benchmarks are developed for all school requirements and components -- including
work-study, advisory, town meeting, and workshop classes.
Documentation, tracking and assessment processes are developed for independent study, work-study and
service learning. (i.e. how can I earn competencies outside of a class?)
ILP is revised to reflect the full set of common and discipline specific competencies
School competencies are available on-line for staff, students and guardians to see
Capstone curriculum is driven by student interest first and second by the goal of becoming highly
competent in some areas. Students know their areas of weakness and are coached to develop or refine
their competency in these areas before graduation.
A system exists for collecting student work into individual growth portfolios and criteria exist to evaluate
these portfolios
Courses are organized around a cluster of competencies that can span multiple disciplines
Traditional quarterly report cards are replaced with ongoing formative reports and summative tracking of
comps as they are earned.
Systems for accommodating and modifying competencies for IEP students are developed, tested and
Students can identify the competencies they need to graduate and can show where they are on the
graduation continuum
Students choose courses and projects based on interest, the gaps in their ILP and areas of necessary
personal growth (Boost classes)
The school schedule provides adequate time for individual conferences between staff and students, small
group tutorials as needed (Tiered interventions) and independent student work time.
Stage Four: High-Performing
Students meet one-to-one with teachers to identify competencies they will attempt outside of a course.
Students meet one-to-one with teachers to identify additional competencies they would like to attempt
within a course that are not on the syllabus
Coursework is sufficiently differentiated that students at different levels can access the same topic and
develop competencies together, but each at their own level (i.e. Level 1 and Level 3 students taking a
course on Romeo and Juliet together, but earning competencies at their specific level)
Students develop individualized schedules and independent study plans to earn competencies outside of
the time/space structure of the school day and school year
Competencies are assessed by the people who are most qualified to assess them (staff, community
partners, mentors, etc) and systems exist for calibrating these assessments
Students participate in developing courses that target a cluster of specific competencies
Community partnerships allow for real-world application of newly acquired competencies -- both to
practice skills and improve our community through service.
Stage Five: Leading
SCCS staff are teaching other schools how to implement competency based education through workshops,
forums and school visits
SCCS staff are teaching other schools how to use competency based education and other alternative school
structures to serve the needs of high-risk students.
SCCS is publishing articles and materials to support the implementation of competency based education
SCCS is hosting forums and workshops to promote competency based education