Innovative Improvement Plan in Aguascalientes!

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Manuel Fernández Elementary School is a public school in the state of Aguascalientes, Mexico, with 650 students ranging from 1st to 6th grade. This 2015-2016 school year, Principal Carola Campos Alvarado is excited to be implementing a new, innovative improvement plan to raise proficiency in math and reading skills.

The initiatives that Manuel Fernández follows are in accordance with the “Local Strategy for the Development of Primary Education” established by the Institute of Education for the State. This is a great example in which the government is looking to promote the following:

    • High quality education in order to increase the development of new capacities and abilities in students
    • Increase student retention in the school system
    • Professional development programs for teachers
    • Strengthening of school management

To achieve these objectives, the Institute of Education in Aguascalientes has developed the “Basic Strategy for Educational Improvement” which is based on the following four priorities:

    • Compliance with the minimum assistance required
    • Improvement of learning (reading, writing, and math)
    • Put an end to educational lag and dropouts
    • Improve the school experience for students

The goal of this government program is to ensure that all children have the knowledge to face the challenges of everyday life and become productive members of society, and Math-Whizz is a key partner in this initiative.

From February through July 2015, Manuel Fernández Elementary implemented a pilot with Math-Whizz among its 2nd and 3rd graders. As a result of a successful implementation, positive feedback from students and teachers, and favorable results during the pilot project which were evident in their improvement plan 2015-2016, Manuel Fernández decided to implement Math-Whizz as a school-wide initiative for this academic year!

See what Carola Campos Alvarado has to say about Math-Whizz:

Manuel Fernández is proud to be a school that is constantly evolving and improving. This means they are always searching for new and exciting opportunities for its students. During this academic year, the school will be working with two main projects:

      1. Math-Whizz, to keep improving the student’s skills in Math and encourage the use of educational technology.
      2. A reading program with different activities and events every month.
        To help students attain proficiency in reading, Manuel Fernández is using several strategies and programs to develop strong reading skills and to make reading a central part of their lives. Some of the activities that are currently taking place in the school include:

        • Students from all grades are reading the book “Clubes rivales,” by author Manuel Malpica, at home every night so that they can come together to discuss the book in class
        • November 12th, National Day of the Book in Mexico
          In 1979 the President of Mexico, José López Portillo declared November 12th as the National Day of the Book in Mexico, which commemorates the birthday of Sister Juana Inés de la Cruz. Manuel Fernández will be conducting a festival with different activities and an official ceremony to commemorate the day
        • A different parent visits the school every day to read in class with the students
        • Students create songs and theatrical representations about the characters of the book in the program “Café Literario

As we know, children’s learning does not stop when they leave school every day. Research has shown that students who enjoy parental involvement with their studies are more likely to prosper in school. The success of Manuel Fernández lies in that parents are in close communication with the school in order to support the school’s initiatives at home. Parents are involved in the activities that are taking place in the school and they help their child reach their true potential and prepare them for success in school and in life.

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Because the school does not have enough computers to allow each student the recommended usage time of 60 minutes per week, parents help students achieve the usage goal thanks to the commitment and communication between parents and the school. Children are greatly improving their Math Age and building more confidence in math and with technology as well as improving their reading skills.

Congratulations Manuel Fernández Elementary on your great efforts to improve the quality of education for your students! Whizz Education is proud and honored to be included in the improvement plan! Cheers to an excellent and productive school year!

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