BTHS 206 Working to 'Open the Gates' to the Community
Bloom Township High School District 206 Superintendent Dr. Lenell Navarre and his administrative team are working to change the culture, and perception, of the district, starting with students, teaching and learning and community service.
Bloom Township High School District is a district in transition, from the top down.
New leaders are shaping the district for the future, with a focus on students, education and changing the perceptions of the district in the community and the state, according to Superintendent Lenell Navarre.
“There has been this perception of this district that we have a gate up,” he said. “We're trying to open that gate and saying, 'Come on in and be a part of what's going on.'”
Changes within the district are slowly extending through the schools in the district, Navarre said.
“Our theme for this year is GPS, 'Great Paths to Students' Success,” Navarre said. “We're rerouting through the accountability of change. I think what we're looking to do here, our ultimate goal, is to raise student achievement.”
The teaching and learning focus is shown through the district's National Honors Society, Navarre said, with 44 students inducted this year and 44 more meeting the standards for induction.
“Regarding teaching and learning, that culture of achievement, has been pushing standards and a rigorous curriculum, so that our students can be prepared for honors and advanced placement classes,” said Bloom High School Principal Michael Campbell.
The district also offers an early college program, in conjunction with Prairie State College, where students can earn college-level credits during their junior and senior years.
Currently 10 students are in a pilot program at Prairie State and the district already has hopes to raise that number to between 25 to 40 students in the next year.
“The students are very excited and we look to grow that program even more in the near future,” Navarre said.
Outside of the classroom, district students are involved in community projects. Recently, students have helped local businesses in various ways, like a plan to build accessibility ramps at the Bloom Township Building and generally focus on giving back to their community.
As the changes in the district continue, Navarre said that the perception of the district is changing, too—a good thing, he said.
"We're very proud of whats going on here," he said. "I'm very proud of the team I've put in place. We're new, but I'm looking forward to an even stronger 2013–14 school year and beyond.
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