Improving Urban Middle Schools: Lessons from the Nativity Schools

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SUNY Press, Feb 12, 2009 - Education - 130 pages
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Nativity schools—there are over forty in urban areas throughout the United States—provide an important alternative to urban middle schools failing to provide their students with an adequate education. Nativity schools, which are privately funded, provide a year-round educational experience for at-risk urban children. They feature small classes, an extended day, and attention to students’ social and spiritual developmental needs. L. Mickey Fenzel visited eleven Nativity schools in seven cities, conducting interviews and classroom observations, and collecting standardized test scores and survey data. Fenzel examines features of the Nativity model that distinguish it from other educational programs and takes a close look at the controversial use of volunteer teachers. The Nativity model is also discussed with respect to its social justice mission that is rooted in Jesuit tradition.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
The Current State of Urban Middle Schools
7
The Nativity School Model
15
Nativity School Structures and Programs
21
Academic Success
37
Social Emotional Spiritual and Physical Development
51
Instruction and Instructional Quality in Nativity Schools
63
Costs Funding and Governance
79
The Schools Their Students and Their Teachers
103
Procedures and Instruments
109
Attendance Rates and Standardized Test Results for Individual Schools Percent of Students Who Achieve at the Indicated Level
115
Comparison of Means of Student SelfPerceptions and Perceptions of Environment for Eight Nativity and Two Traditional Parochial Schools
117
References
119
Author Index
125
Subject Index
127
Copyright

Summary of Findings Conclusions and Implications
87

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About the author (2009)

L. Mickey Fenzel is Professor and Chair of Teacher Education at Loyola College in Maryland.

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