New high school education initiative transforming the way students learn

Local News

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — High school students in Central Arkansas are now among the first in the state to take part in a new education initiative that is transforming the very way they learn.

Students in 10 Pulaski County Public High Schools are now taking part in a new model called Academies of Central Arkansas.

James Reddish with the Little Rock Chamber of Commerce says students are given the tools to tailor their learning experiences towards subjects they enjoy.

The new model aims to develop a more goal-orientated student that is invested in their learning.

“What’s really powerful about this program is we see GPA’s go up. We see core academic learning go up. Standardized test scores go up. Discipline goes down. Attendance goes up. By transforming the experience the student has at the high school level,” said Reddish.

The Academies of Central Arkansas is a joint initiative of the four public school districts across Pulaski County, the give chambers of commerce and community, business, and elected leaders broadly. The model transfors the public high school experience by blending core academics with career and technical education using a system called Ford Next Generation Learning.

Students see the relevance and engage with their Math, Science, English, and Social Studies when it is taught through the lens of an occupation or industry theme that interests them. This model prepares all students to be both college ready and career ready upon graduation.

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