All students will belong to a personalized, smaller learning community engaged around interests where relationships are valued. Instruction will be project-based, applied and integrated. Meaningful business engagement will be evident and post-secondary institutions will be heavily engaged.
MNPS high schools will be world-class schools that graduate college- and career-ready students in partnership with the community. MNPS will be a district that emerges as a trend-setter in innovative practices where all students have the highest level of education and exposure to post-secondary education, career opportunities, and real-life experiences.
MNPS is in the midst of a fundamental shift in public high school education. Since 2006, in partnership with civic and business engagement, the district has been redesigning its zoned high schools into smaller learning communities, collectively known as The Academies of Nashville.
The Academies enable students to learn through the lens of a career or academic theme in a highly personalized learning community. Through their academy, students are exposed to a multitude of careers and opportunities, industry skills, and potential employers by way of classroom speakers, site visits, job shadowing and internships.
The Academies of Nashville offer students:
- relevant and rigorous curriculum;
- 21st Century Skills such as critical thinking, information, communication, and technology literacy, and life skills (www.p21.org);
- the opportunity to form closer relationships with teachers and advisors;
- practical work experience through job shadowing and internships;
- the possibility for career certifications;
- the opportunity to learn in the context of a particular career or subject theme;
- more engaging curriculum and instruction;
- most importantly, preparation for college AND career.
The Academies of Nashville fall within six broad career groupings:
- Arts, Media & Communications
- Business, Marketing & Information Technology
- Engineering, Manufacturing & Industrial Technology
- Hospitality & Tourism
- Human & Public Services
The Academies have already begun to yield positive results for our students: they are more engaged in their studies, they have a richer understanding of course material thanks to the relevance and hands-on learning, and they feel more prepared for life after high school.