The Renaissance School at Hamilton Avenue
Efforts to Reduce Racial and Economic Isolation The Renaissance School at Hamilton Avenue is a magnet school that offers students from across Greenwich an opportunity to attend school a uniquely different environment. Focused on high student achievement, our mission is to prepare all students to succeed at the highest levels in preparation for secondary education. In September 2007, our new building will be ready for occupancy. The Renaissance School at Hamilton Avenue has a wonderfully diverse population. This is celebrated through monthly assemblies featuring student work and evening activities that engage families and friends. These include Family Math Night and Diversity Book Clubs for parent and child. We have a large number of native Spanish speaking students and provide all our parent communiqués in both English and Spanish.
Our magnet feature allows us to provide additional programs for our students. The staff utilizes a balanced literacy approach using a Reader’s Workshop model. We also use the Everyday Math Program which emphasizes higher level thinking skills and hands-on learning. In addition, we provide before and after-school programs that emphasize academic achievement, homework help, and enrichment through the arts. Finally, our magnet status enables us to provide Spanish as a second language to all students in grades Kindergarten through five.
Hamilton Avenue School is located within a multigenerational community that invests in its school. There are many celebrations that reflect both the diversity and the uniqueness of the community. In addition to our dedicated PTA, we offer adult classes in English, computer technology, and child development to ensure that Hamilton Avenue School is an integral part of the community.
Evidenced of Sustained Improvement in Student Accomplishments In a 2006 district-wide survey, 100% of Hamilton Avenue's teachers said they had accepted responsibility for student achievement. We believe that students who are not achieving need additional opportunities to learn, and provide that time with additional before and after school programs as well as a Saturday program. Student reading achievement has increased in all grade levels, particularly in grade 4 as indicated by the CMT scores. Writing performance has increased significantly across all grade levels. These significant improvements have been recognized by many state and local organizations.
To increase student achievement, before school programs are established for students who score below district benchmarks on the Developmental Reading Assessments. Additionally, an after school program has been established for all the students in grades 2-5 with particular emphasis on reading and math. These sessions also provide an opportunity for the students to extend their 90-minute literacy block and to become familiar with the types of questions they later encounter on the CMT's. A Saturday School is provided for specific fourth graders who have not met proficiency on the reading CMTs; this program is supported through Title One funds and uses an integrated approach of instruction through science, reading, writing, and math. A Faculty Mentor program has been successful in developing lasting relationships with at-risk students.
Finally, administrative collaboration with staff through weekly meetings in reading, writing and math, enables faculty to plan for the individual needs of students. Individual Student Intervention Plans (ISIPs) are developed and monitored for student progress. Systems for improving instruction have been developed through standardization of lesson planning, assessment tools, literacy checklists, reading and writing templates, and a focus on standards for instruction in literacy and numeracy.
Supplemental School Information As a magnet school, Hamilton Avenue School offers a variety of features designed to create a community of high achievers. Beginning in Kindergarten, students participate in foreign language studies (Spanish). An expanded arts-in-education program ensures that students have assured experiences in every grade that support whole student development. Through collaborations with local arts organizations, each class participates in museum studies that are aligned with the curriculum. Fifth graders are encouraged to participate in a Docent Program at the Greenwich Council of the Arts.
Hamilton Avenue School also aspires to meet the physical wellness of students with a unique Physical Education program. Finally, Hamilton Avenue strives to create a climate that is conducive to learning through its adoption of the Responsive Classroom Approach. By creating a safe and nurturing community, free from teasing and bullying, students and staff at Hamilton Avenue School are able to keep a focused commitment to high achievement.
Future features of the magnet program at Hamilton Avenue School will include: reduced class sizes of 15 students per class in Pre-k, Kindergarten, and grade one.; an expanded Pre-K program; an expanded instrumental music and theatre arts program, and a Community Room for use by parents and the local community.
The Renaissance School at Hamilton Avenue
184 Hamilton Avenue
Greenwich, CT 06830
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