New DPS educational initiatives to improve southwest Detroit schools

May 14th, 2015
Parents and students outside of Maybury Elementary in southwest Detroit

Continuing its “comprehensive southwest Detroit strategy,” Detroit Public Schools will implement several initiatives next school year to strengthen student academics, expand bilingual education, and help parents improve their literacy and job skills.

These initiatives include:

  • A new Clark Park K-12 Educational Comunidad will share programming at Maybury, Earhart and Western International High School. Using a culturally-inclusive approach, the Comunidad will emphasize the STEM disciplines, University programming, DAPCEP, AP, dual language, tutoring and mentoring, and athletics at these three schools that anchor Clark Park. The Clark Park Coalition is partnering with DPS in this endeavor.
  • A new Dual Immersion Bilingual Academy at Neinas Elementary. Neinas will implement a dual immersion program to serve the community and create a feeder school to the successful Academy of the Americas.
  • Escuela Preparatoria La Academia de las Americas expansion. The district will expand the Academy of the Americas to a new high school campus. Academy of the Americas, which added a grade 9 this year, will expand to grade 10 and continue to add a grade each year through grade 12.
  • Beard SW Detroit Adult Ed and Early Childhood Community Learning Center. A new Adult Education program will be added to the Beard Thrive by Five site (operated by Southwest Solutions) to serve the needs of the growing bilingual community.

DPS announced these initiatives for southwest Detroit schools this week as part of its larger plan for school-based innovations in the district. Many of these innovations came from proposals submitted by principals and educators to improve academics and enhance customer service for families served by the DPS system.

Other new DPS initiatives that will benefit schools in southwest Detroit include:

  • Clippert Academy will expand its offerings of Art, Music or Gym through a new scheduling process.
  • Schools district-wide will enhance their academic competitiveness through new Project-Based Learning Programs, in which students engage in hands-on, real-world activities to more deeply explore, understand and connect to their academic subjects.
  • The district will develop a comprehensive Curb Appeal Operations Plan including landscape, signage, and campus beautification. In addition to dedicated district resources for every school site, the school system will newly engage school partners, particularly businesses, community organizations and churches to seek volunteer resources and in-kind donations for basic campus cleanup and beautification work.
  • Through the DPS Office of Parent and Community Engagement Parent University Program (Parent U), the district will offer “Parent Earn and Learn.” This program will offer parents opportunities to build their job skills, attain paid employment, and achieve a better understanding of how to more effectively support their children’s learning to improve academic and attendance outcomes.
  • The district will improve parent engagement through new academically-focused text alerts and web-based communications.

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