Van Buren High School's guided studies program sees exceptional results

Van Buren High School has been taking a new approach to help students struggling academically, and the results have been outstanding.

Van Buren high school implemented the guided studies program at the beginning of the 2011-2012 school year in an effort to increase student accountability.

The guided studies program is a scheduled 25 minute period at the end of each school day which provides students who are doing unsatisfactory work or are missing assignments an opportunity to receive individual and small group instruction.

The guided studies list is updated and posted throughout the building twice daily.

Students report to their assigned teacher's classroom for the last 25 minutes of the day, while students not on the list are rewarded by being dismissed 25 minutes early. The early dismissal also provides an incentive for the struggling students.

Since the implementation of the program, the number of D, F, and incomplete grades have dropped significantly.

Van Buren High School Principal Chuck Banks attributes the success to the enthusiastic response by both students and teachers.

"We're pretty darn happy that the kids worked so well and got everything turned in," said Banks. "That comes from a number of things--obviously the students are committed to this. I think our teachers and staff have really done a great job of supporting this program. They know the importance and really it's changed the culture here at Van Buren and we're really proud of that."

Van Buren High School hopes to ensure continued success by embedding high expectations in their culture, continuing to gather feedback from staff and students, and celebrating succes.