Bridgeton Public Charter School is committed to achieving and maintaining the following:
- Academics: Bridgeton Public Charter School’s academic program will be anchored in the rigor of the Common Core Standards, New Jersey Core Curriculum Content Standards, NJ Model Curriculum and educational research that will enable us to provide a thorough, well-defined, sequential curriculum which integrates drama, multi-cultural experiences, and technology. Some components of the curriculum will be utilized as a result of successful results in VPCS. One identified area, ELL, will need augmentation in curriculum, professional development and instruction. Bridgeton has a large Hispanic population throughout the city therefore utilization of various methods including a blended learning model, tutorial sessions, instruction supported by technology, and time allocated daily for ELL will be necessary. Teachers will utilize best practice teaching strategies that are research based and proven effective. VPCS will be the foundation on which the academic program is designed keeping the community and population of Bridgeton in mind for adaptations.
- Educational Experience: Bridgeton Public Charter School will provide engaging student focused learning experiences immersed in active participation that will be further developed and processed through cooperative learning, collaborative learning, large and small group experiences, and the use of technology, data and integration of drama. It is a guiding principle of the school program that drama can and should be used as a way of approaching the study of every subject, and that it can do so without compromising curricular goals. Students will experience drama in all subjects when it can enrich and enhance interest and learning. Teachers will work with VPCS teachers to learn ways to integrate drama into daily instruction. This will be done on in-service days and through visitations. The focus on ELL will be anchored in successful research based techniques and programs supported by technology.
- Assessment: Bridgeton Public Charter School’s data culture supported by technology will help ensure instructional decisions are based on individual student needs as identified through data collection and analysis. Assessments will include classroom monitored formative assessments, classroom and computer based benchmark and summative assessments, student work samples and portfolio assessment. The assessment mechanism will be clinically objective through the use of rubrics and scales. Student work will be analyzed to determine individual needs of students. Celebration of achievement will be a major component of the data culture to build intrinsic motivation in students. Vineland Public Charter School has a fully developed successful data culture. Building on their experience in developing this culture BPCS will be able to establish a data culture within the first year. Appropriate ELL assessment programs will be utilized to determine individual student needs.
- School Climate: Bridgeton Public Charter School will provide a safe, non-biased, and caring environment that promotes family, community and character building programs and projects. A common language will be established to create a positive climate that supports and rewards good work, good behavior and kindness. Drama provides for the utilization of tolerance and empathy which prepares students to live in a world that is increasingly team-oriented. Participation in drama activities provides opportunities to develop self-control and discipline. Students will learn to work together to find the best way for each member of a group to contribute. Community minded projects focused on the city of Bridgeton will enable students to learn about helping others and the common good.
- At Risk Students: Bridgeton Public Charter School will focus on identifying at risk students early through screening techniques and one to one individualized assessments in order to provide a variety of intensive early interventions for children ages 5-6. Successful practices and identified programs from VPCS will be available as well as programs deemed to be suited to BPCS specifically. We will embrace, engage and fervently support family members through education, meetings, and opportunities to participate in school activities in order to build trust and acceptance within the family unit thus increasing student achievement and positively impacting family presence within the educational realm. Programs to meet parents’ and students’ needs will be available based on determined need and multiple measures.
- Professional Development: In order to ensure superior teaching, a robust emphasis will be placed on effective professional development for teachers. They will engage in numerous forms of embedded professional development such as: data study groups, peer coaching and peer review, lesson studies, collaborative planning, sessions for study and analysis of student work and planning for future instruction, and in class coaching with emphasis on instructional strategies. The topics and form of professional development will be determined through student work, data collection and analysis, teacher identified needs, and school program needs. Based on the city population of ELL it will be a focus in all aspects of professional development. To ensure that teachers grow and can attain the “Highly Effective” status, adequate time and resources will be allocated through the school calendar and budget to ensure that teachers receive needed professional development. VPCS will be part of professional development and provide for peer observations and critics. Teachers will spend time in Professional Learning Communities to provide the opportunity to share thoughts, findings, ideas and experiences. Common planning time will also take place to enable teachers to work together, share and analyze data when planning for instruction at each grade level.
- Time in School: It is our belief that the agricultural society based calendar on which today’s education day and year is based in no longer appropriate to enable students to compete successfully in the global society. Bridgeton Public Charter School will provide a longer school day and year to enable teachers to participate in professional development, use best practices in instruction which can require more time than traditional approaches to instruction. The added time also provides for focus on drama, ELL, data, and technology.
- Fiscally Sound: Bridgeton Public Charter School will maintain a strong governmental and fiscally sound base on which to build a student focused rigorous educational system. The fiscal basis will mirror that of the successful Vineland Public Charter School.