The Urban Assembly is made up of a team of committed and passionate educators and professionals. We are dedicated to providing our students with a first-class public education and carry out this mission by hiring superior leaders, school staff, school support team staff, and administrative staff. We look for individuals whose skills and beliefs align with our commitment to our schools and students. All Urban Assembly schools were created based on the premise that small schools with compelling themes, strong partners, flexible hiring and innovative teaching practices can provide a top notch education to students who would otherwise attend large high schools. We strive for excellence in our schools and our organization, and are committed to leading by example to strengthen broad scale public education in this country.


Algebra Success Consultant

The Urban Assembly

Consultant Project: Algebra Success Consultant

Consultation Term: February 2021 - December 2021

About Algebra Success Program:

Initially piloted in 2017-18, the UA’s Algebra Success program was developed to address two key realities for UA students and schools: understanding of and facility with Algebra stands as a critical gateway to ongoing success and access to higher-level coursework (and, by extension, college and career opportunities); and the UA’s outcomes in math have historically lagged far behind those in ELA, both due to the complexity of the subject and insufficient targeted UA programming to address it.

Over the past two years, the Algebra Success program has produced dramatic increases in students’ college readiness in math (as displayed in the chart below) and better positioned students for success in school, post-secondary education, and professional endeavors.

The UA Algebra Success program was an instructional initiative launched in 2017 by Dr. Bisola Neil, former Math Program Manager. After working consistently with math teachers from the UA School for Law and Justice and the UA Bronx Academy of Letters, she noticed a shift in practice that resulted in higher math college readiness for students. Algebra Success became a network-wide initiative designed to increase curricular alignment, build teacher pedagogical practices, and optimize assessment practices, the goal of this program is to dramatically increase students’ ability to pass math Regents exams at or above the college-ready threshold, thereby decreasing the need for college remediation.

The UA’s Algebra Success program maximizes post-secondary opportunities for all students by explicitly addressing under-preparedness in Algebra, which for too many students has become a hindrance that prevents them from achieving advanced mathematical competence. This begins with actively engaging in an inquiry-based curriculum focused on conceptually understanding the overarching concepts in Algebra for a two-semester course in the 9th grade. This curriculum explicitly addresses varying disproportionalities in mathematics classrooms by centering students' identity and sense of belonging to enhance their experiences with such a curriculum. It supports leaders and teachers in pushing their practice in ways that deepen their pedagogy, content knowledge and beliefs about the teaching and learning of mathematics.

This approach mirrors the stance of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics in creating, supporting, and sustaining a culture of access and equity in the teaching and learning of mathematics by ensuring that:

  • All students have access to a challenging mathematics curriculum, taught by skilled and effective teachers who differentiate instruction as needed
  • Student progress is monitored and needed accommodations are made
  • Remediation and additional challenges are offered when appropriate

Algebra Success assists schools in:

  • Redefining expectations for instruction, measurement, and outcomes in the Algebra 1 classroom so that all students have access to the highest level of math possible by the end of high school
  • Increasing 9th grade Algebra 1 course pass rate, reducing credit gaps toward graduation
  • Increasing 9th grade Algebra Regents seat rate
  • Increasing 9th grade Algebra Regents college-ready pass rates

Scope of Work:

The Algebra Success consultant will work closely with the Program Manager to write and refine curriculum and create professional development sessions. That consultant will primarily focus on supporting the development of middle schools in the program.

First, this consultant will work on making revisions to the assessment and curriculum tools, and tailor them for a middle school experience. Second, this consultant will work alongside the Program Manager in planning for the execution for the high quality planning PLCs of the implementation of Algebra Success curriculum. Finally, the consultant will be focused on adding integrated, real-world performance based tasks to both middle and high school curriculum in alignment with the UA model.

Scope of Work:

The Algebra Success consultant will:

  • Create an audit or process for middle school principals and teachers to use, in order to ensure appropriate math standards are taught in prior years so that all 8th graders can take Algebra.
  • Assess curriculum and provide recommendations to accommodate for integration of 8th grade standards and pacing shifts.
  • Revise curriculum, after approval of recommendations, to meet the needs of 8th graders.
  • Further revise the current Algebra Success curriculum in a 2nd round, in order to provide additional guidance for teachers to implement the curriculum with fidelity.
  • Review both middle and high school curriculums, and add or deepen integrated performance tasks in alignment with the UA model.
  • Plan and implement curriculum planning Professional Learning Communities, in close collaboration with the Program Manager.

Deliverables:

  • Create an audit for schools to use to determine how to teach the prerequisite standards for Algebra 1
  • Algebra Success revised “8th grade only” Unit Plans that incorporate 8th grade standards into the current Algebra curriculum, with completion of robust performance tasks and capstone projects.
  • Integration of 3-5 key performance tasks into AS HS and MS Curriculum
  • Professional Learning Community Planning Meeting Outlines for 8th grade teachers planning lessons for upcoming

Compensation:

  • Consultant is expected to complete ~20 days of work, compensated at a daily rate to be negotiated, to be distributed over ~12 - 24 weeks with the possibility of a contract extension for continued work
  • Target start date: February 25th
  • To inquire about the position, please email jobs-instruction@urbanassembly.org with ‘Algebra Success Consultant’ in the subject line.


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