ACADEMICS – SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM
The IAS School Improvement Program (SIP) is an ongoing program to keep our school abreast of all the latest academic and technological developments, as well as maintain our celebrated standing within the academic world. At the turn of the 21st century, IAS inaugurated the SIP by conducting surveys on school demographics and the needs of our students (even to the point of utilizing home-based questionnaires), with the aim of evaluating our relationship with our students and their families. We self-assess to ensure we are providing the best possible academic standards for the students. At the beginning of each year, staff and department meetings are held to discuss and implement new policies and programs, to continuously update the curriculum. The school’s mission statement is at the heart of all we do, which always places the students at the core of our decision making. During the curriculum development process, teachers work together in teams to design engaging and dynamic lessons using a wide range of resources that span the curriculum. From this point, teachers create diverse and effective assessments for each of their subjects and grade levels. The past few years have also been spent improving the behavior and attendance policies, which has led to a dramatic 50% decrease in detentions and a remarkable increase in student attendance. IAS is constantly focused on a culture of improvement in the areas of:
- Socialization and multicultural awareness
- Reinforcing the needs of students with academic and behavioral special needs
- Improving the school’s curriculum, lesson planning and assessment
- Maximizing the quality of parental relationships
- Student Council and extracurricular activities
- Structured student activities
- Resource availability
We have recently implemented the following:
- A Peer-Tutoring program
- Teacher availability during homeroom periods for specific theme related discussions
- A multi-tier individualized behavior modification plan
- A Disciplinary Committee by which students who display either negative academic or behavioral needs will be reviewed, counseled and/or disciplined (detention, essay assignments) on a daily/weekly basis until their behavioral issues are significantly reduced
- Peer mediation/conflict resolution
- Regular office hours for each administrative member
- Psychological counseling provided by our staff psychologist
- Increased homeroom hours so students of each class can take their concerns to assigned teachers
- Career and college counseling
- Teacher planning/meetings to ensure the efficiency of inter-departmental projects and to reassess teacher goals. They also serve to restructure our standardized in-house assessments and curriculum development
- Parent conferences for parents to meet with teachers about their children before and during each grading period
- Student Council activities such as the IAS Times and Community Service projects for the Warsaw Volunteer Mission. This also results in better student-to-staff communications and extracurricular activity meetings
- Teachers assigned to specific tasks in order to carefully monitor the students, which provides time for students to take full advantage of the resources available in the building
All new students entering 2nd through 11th Grades are required to pass minimal proficiency exams and/or class requirements in English reading, writing, and oral comprehension.
These evaluations take place during the first weeks of classes and are used to determine which pupils require special tutoring in English as a Second Language (ESL), as well as in other academic areas.
Pre-Kindergarten, Kindergarten and First Grade pupils are not required to pass proficiency exams/class requirements. These grades concentrate primarily on building English language skills in reading, listening, speaking and writing, through games and social interaction. Mathematical skills are introduced in Kindergarten and developed during the 1st Grade.
In the 4th through 6th grades, German lessons are introduced, as well as Polish History lessons for those students interested in taking the Polish National Exams. In the 7th through 12th grades, students have the option to study French or German.