The problem with high schools isn't the students. It isn't the teachers. It's the way high schools are organized and run and the kind of teaching the conventional model promotes.
In a redesigned innovative high school, the conditions are changed by design to permit more effective teaching and learning. To create a redesigned high school, educators transform part of a traditional high school into a small, academically nimble school that can serve students better. In some cases, an entire traditional high school is converted into a number of smaller, redesigned high schools.
Teachers in a redesigned school adopt a theme or common way of teaching. Often, the themes connect to the knowledge-based economy into which students will graduate â?? biotechnology, information technology, health sciences, engineering or international studies, for example. Their goal is not to prepare graduates for a specific career, but to create an organizing theme that allows students to prepare for college and any career they may choose.
In many cases, schools receive the support of national or state partners to implement their chosen themes. For example, nine North Carolina schools have adopted the technology-enhanced school model developed by the California-based New Tech Foundation.