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Thread summary:

Thoughts on schools in Las Vegas, Shadow Ridge, Arbor View, Palo Verde, students exceed standard NCLB metrics, magnet schools, reasonable dress codes, attendance schedule

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Old 09-07-2007, 10:07 AM
 
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Question Thoughts On These 3 Schools

Planning on moving to Las Vegas. any thoughts on these three schools: Shadow Ridge, Arbor View, or Palo Verde
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Old 09-07-2007, 11:00 AM
 
Location: NW Las Vegas - Lone Mountain
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All are more than adequate. PV and Shadow Ridge have about 88% of students meeting or exceeding standard on the NCLB metrics. Arbor View is about 86%. Note though that Arbor View is a new school and shaking off the startup. I would expect this year they will score about the same as the other two. The best of the high schools are all magnets with controlled admission score in the upper 90s. There are 4 "regular" schools above PV in the rankings. That is out of 40 schools.
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Old 09-07-2007, 03:58 PM
 
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thanks, what are the magnet schools, and where are they.
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Old 09-07-2007, 04:01 PM
 
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what are A and B days in the school schedule. Are these 12 month or 9 month schools, and what is the dress code for these schools. I have heard that the girls can'nt wear jeans or shirts have to be plain colored,no prints.
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Old 09-07-2007, 04:32 PM
 
Location: NW Las Vegas - Lone Mountain
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCOTTRELL View Post
what are A and B days in the school schedule. Are these 12 month or 9 month schools, and what is the dress code for these schools. I have heard that the girls can'nt wear jeans or shirts have to be plain colored,no prints.
These are high schools which are all nine month schools. I doubt any of these have dress codes other than forbidding the outlandish. Each has a web site. Google the School Name. They will have reasonably complete info on dress.
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Old 09-07-2007, 07:41 PM
 
Location: Las Vegas
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A and B days refer to block scheduling. All have the normal dress code- shorts have to be an appropriate length, no spaghetti straps also there is certain clothing that has been classified as "gang" attire that is not allowed. Each website will address most of your questions.
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Old 09-08-2007, 11:06 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCOTTRELL View Post
what are A and B days in the school schedule. Are these 12 month or 9 month schools, and what is the dress code for these schools. I have heard that the girls can'nt wear jeans or shirts have to be plain colored,no prints.
Several schools including PV and AV and a few others are on a block day schedule which is VERY confusing: they alternate classes every day, so that you go to your designated "A"-days classes on A day and your "B"-day classes on B days.

Problem is, they're not the same consistent days. For example, let's say that...
Monday was an A day.
Tuesday would be a B day
Wednesday would be an A day
Thursday would be a B day
Friday would be an A day.

HOWEVER, rather than having, say, Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays be A days and Tuesdays and Thursdays be B days with longer periods, which would make something like sense, it works like this: If Friday is an A day, as in my example above, Monday is then a B day, and so on.

This makes it very confusing, as you can imagine. Unless you can remember which day (A or B) the day before was, it's hard to remember which classes you're supposed to go to on any given day. If there's a holiday weekend there, it throws the whole schedule completely off.

It was done so that...

*Students have less freedom. Before, when they had regular periods of (let's say) 7 a day, that meant that the students were walking around between classes 7 times. 7 opportunities to be tardy, 7 opportunities to be absent. Each absence and tardy gets recorded, and by no means does the school want it to look like it has a problem with absences, because that data goes into its annual report card, so they instituted block days.

* Why? If it's only possible to miss four classes per day, you reduce the number of absences (on paper) that a student has for a given class. However, the actual and factual problem is that a block day (though it's counted as one class) contains the content of two classes. A student who's missed two block days has missed twice the content of a student who's missed two regular days. However, ON PAPER, which is the only thing that counts, the student looks like s/he has only missed the class a few times. Therefore, if she or he is failing, it's clearly the fault of the teacher, because how could a few absences really affect their grades that much?

Hope that helps clarify the situation.
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Old 09-08-2007, 11:47 AM
 
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Originally Posted by SCOTTRELL View Post
thanks, what are the magnet schools, and where are they.
http://magnet.ccsd.net/

There is a link above.
However, word to the wise: there are only a few true magnet schools in Vegas and the rest are magnet programs. That is a significant difference I'll explain a bit about below.

The true magnet schools are...

LVA (Las Vegas Academy), a school similar to the one in Fame (like NY's High School of the Performing Arts) with obviously an arts and international language emphasis.

CCHS (Community College High School) - Though not officially listed on the CCSD site as a magnet program, it basically is one for all intents and purposes in that it's a self-selected program within the public school district. There are several branches of CCHS located throughout the valley. This is a combined/dual credit program in which one can earn college and high school credits at the same time. It's only for juniors and seniors. VERY academically motivated and self-directed students do very well here, especially the ones that view high school as being about education (as opposed to, say, playing football).

A-Tech (Advanced Technologies Academy) - A-Tech has a variety of "majors," but the biggies are in computers and law. Very tolerant, nerd-friendly atmosphere and generally academically demanding, though not insanely so.

Okay, those are real magnets in which everyone at the school actually wanted to be there, applied to go there, goes out of their way to get there, and so on. This makes a SUBSTANTIAL, perceptible difference in the quality of the education and the general quality of life at the school. For one thing, student discipline is basically not even an issue at these schools. Yes, occasionally things happen like fights or minor theft or plagiarism, but these tend to be very minor and isolated incidents.

The other ones (e.g., Valley's International Baccalaureate program) are what I personally call "fake magnets," in which you have a magnet program embedded into a comprehensive zoned high school. That means that there will be a little pocket of people who actually chose to go there in the midst of a swarm of people who were forced to go there and hate it. Except for the classes specific to one's magnet program, the classes at fake magnets are mixed, so for example, you might take a class in (let's say) law at Canyon Springs with people who chose to go there, but then have to attend an English class with the zoo crew who have no clue why they're in school except the law forces them to go and their parents like it because property taxes are cheaper than day care.

In short, I would avoid the fake magnets. Hope that helps.
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Old 09-08-2007, 12:12 PM
 
Location: NW Las Vegas - Lone Mountain
15,757 posts, read 19,764,773 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Wallace View Post
Several schools including PV and AV and a few others are on a block day schedule which is VERY confusing: they alternate classes every day, so that you go to your designated "A"-days classes on A day and your "B"-day classes on B days.

Problem is, they're not the same consistent days. For example, let's say that...
Monday was an A day.
Tuesday would be a B day
Wednesday would be an A day
Thursday would be a B day
Friday would be an A day.

HOWEVER, rather than having, say, Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays be A days and Tuesdays and Thursdays be B days with longer periods, which would make something like sense, it works like this: If Friday is an A day, as in my example above, Monday is then a B day, and so on.

This makes it very confusing, as you can imagine. Unless you can remember which day (A or B) the day before was, it's hard to remember which classes you're supposed to go to on any given day. If there's a holiday weekend there, it throws the whole schedule completely off.

It was done so that...

*Students have less freedom. Before, when they had regular periods of (let's say) 7 a day, that meant that the students were walking around between classes 7 times. 7 opportunities to be tardy, 7 opportunities to be absent. Each absence and tardy gets recorded, and by no means does the school want it to look like it has a problem with absences, because that data goes into its annual report card, so they instituted block days.

* Why? If it's only possible to miss four classes per day, you reduce the number of absences (on paper) that a student has for a given class. However, the actual and factual problem is that a block day (though it's counted as one class) contains the content of two classes. A student who's missed two block days has missed twice the content of a student who's missed two regular days. However, ON PAPER, which is the only thing that counts, the student looks like s/he has only missed the class a few times. Therefore, if she or he is failing, it's clearly the fault of the teacher, because how could a few absences really affect their grades that much?

Hope that helps clarify the situation.
Why Charlie I am surprised at you. And you question my racking the NCLB numbers and then do such a sneaky attack on block scheduling.

For the uninformed. Charlie is a school teacher who obviously does not like block scheduling. And rather than discuss the merits he has made an outrageous and totally misleading attack.

Block scheduling is controversial. I was a parent when an early adoption was made in my daughters high school in California. It was not successful.

However Block Scheduling has been widely adopted and has very strong proponents. Unfortunately the question as to whether it is, or is not, a good technique is still unresolved.

Like so much of education the research for a sensible determination is almost never done...see Charter Schools. This is another of those.

The arguments however are much better than Charlie's facile BS.
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Old 09-08-2007, 07:42 PM
 
Location: Las Vegas
560 posts, read 1,460,715 times
Reputation: 378
I teach at a middle school that also has block scheduling. I actually think it is a good thing. It allows a lot longer in the classroom to actually do things. I teach science and I love that it allows time to complete activities without always rushing through them. I also keep a schedule on my board that the students write in their planners each Friday that tells them what classes they have the next week. I believe that most of the teachers do this. I don't think to many students get confused, actually they sometimes have the schedule down better than I do. I don't know about the whole absence and tardy thing, but NCLB has caused a lot of strange events in school districts.
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