Carpe Diem – Meridian APR 2015

Carpe Diem – Meridian APR 2015 Explanation


Carpe Diem-Meridian not only defied expectations for any first-year high school, it posted academic outcomes that just may cause many urban educators to reconsider their own expectations. On the NWEA assessments the school administers to students four times a year, they demonstrated school wide average growth of three instructional years in reading and English language arts, four years in math, and three years in science in the school’s first year. Results on the statewide ISTEP standardized test, an overall pass rate of 87 percent across all content areas, offered definitive validation for the gains (see table below). On the Indiana End of Course Assessment for high school students, 100 percent of students passed English 10 and biology, and 90 percent passed Algebra I. A majority of each scored “strong pass” (exceeded standards). Already widely covered in national media stories, Carpe Diem students spend about 50 percent of their day in supported independent learning, rotating into face-to-face instruction throughout the day. Students are granted a great deal of latitude for what they work on, which resources they utilize, and at what pace. Teachers and collaborative learning coaches track their progress at all times, and leverage real-time data to guide in-person classroom content and one-on-one tutoring sessions. At staff meetings each morning before school, teachers review the previous day’s results together, discussing individual students’ progress and mapping out the day’s plans. Carpe Diem Meridian 2013 ISTEP Passing Rates by Grade and Subject

% Pass % Pass+
Grade 6 English Language Arts 71 43
Math 86 29
Grade 7 ELA 82 0
Math 82 9
Grade 8 ELA 93 27
Math 93 13

By Don Soifer, Carpe Diem Indiana board member and Lexington Institute Executive Vice President