Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Important News for Parents: Positive Changes on Horizon for Madison Cluster Schools in 2015-16

San Diego Unified School District is making some changes to schools in the Madison Cluster that will improve the quality of education available in many of Clairemont’s neighborhood schools.

The schools that will see changes in the 2015-16 school year include Innovation and Creative, Performing and Media Arts (CPMA) middle schools, and Field, Hawthorne, Lafayette, Lindbergh Schweitzer, Sequoia and Whitman elementary schools.

In collaboration with the Madison Community of Schools, the district recently announced that Innovation Middle School will add sixth-grade instruction to become a 6-8 middle school. CPMA will remain an arts magnet school and continue to offer instruction in grades 6-8. Sixth grade will no longer be offered at the elementary schools.

In addition, Sequoia Elementary, which is the only year-round school in the cluster, will convert to a traditional calendar in order to align its schedule with other area schools.

Students currently in fifth and sixth grades at the cluster elementary schools will have the option to attend either Innovation Middle or CPMA. Information sessions will be held at both schools for
parents and students to learn more about the process for selecting a school. CPMA will hold its information session on Wednesday, Nov. 5, at 6 p.m. Innovation Middle will hold its information session on Thursday, Nov. 6, at 6 p.m. Both schools will offer tours the week of Nov. 10 through 17 for interested parents and students.

Adding sixth grade to Innovation Middle was proposed in order to provide more continuity in the K-12 programs offered across the cluster schools and meet the need for a second middle school that
offers grades 6-8. The changes closely align with the district’s Vision 2020 to create quality schools in every neighborhood.

These ideas were developed by parents and staff from the schools in the Madison Cluster, as well as interested community members, who have been meeting regularly to discuss how to improve neighborhood schools and increase enrollment. The San Diego Unified Board of Education approved the changes on June 3, 2014.

“Our schools have always offered strong educational programs in a variety of areas,” said Board of Education trustee Dr. John Lee Evans. “However, we have noticed over the last few years that some students were leaving the cluster after fifth grade to attend a traditional middle school that offered grades 6-8, so we are making both middle schools in the area grades 6-8 to ensure continuity of instruction throughout the grade levels.”

Preparations are underway for changes in both instruction and facilities, and will continue throughout the 2014-15 school year and beyond. Relocatable classrooms will be placed on the Innovation Middle campus to accommodate sixth-grade students until the upgrades and additions to the campus are completed.

Both Innovation Middle and CPMA will maintain their individual academic focus – technology and the arts - while providing students with a comprehensive 6-8-grade experience. Madison High will continue to offer both STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) and Arts curriculum.

More information about the Madison Community of Schools and the upcoming changes can be found on the Madison High School website at www.sandi.net/madison.

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