Manchester, New Hampshire is located on the west side of the Merrimack River running through New Hampshire’s Merrimack Valley. Manchester West High School (ManWest) is a public, comprehensive high school serving approximately 1,192 students in grades 9-12. The school represents the city’s poorest and most diverse population; 58% of the student population is eligible for Free or Reduced Lunch. The school houses the city’s Special Needs students, both physically and socially identified, who represent over 25% of the school’s student body. Nearly 10% are immigrant or refugee students speaking more than 20 languages. ManWest meets these challenges through a strong mission that emphasizes 21st century skills, quarterly standards-based performance assessments, and a dedicated, student-focused faculty.
As a result of participating in the i3 New England Network, the greatest accomplishment for ManWest has been the development of collegiality among the faculty. This collaboration, with the support and guidance of coaching from CSSR, has led to the following major outcomes: co-creation of school-wide rubrics; the implementation of classroom strategies for engagement; a focus on creating authentic and rigorous assessments; and a grading system focused on both academic and social/civic parameters. The work with the i3 New England Network has led to a culture of common purpose at ManWest.
“As a member of the PAWG group I have met so many incredible teachers and facilitators, have improved my practice as a result of every meeting, and have been able to experience and learn from the many and varied cultures represented by the network of thirteen schools. I have become adept at facilitating, tuning, validating, and calibrating lessons/assessments. With ideas from every meeting, I have made my classroom more student-focused and incorporated multiple engaging activities… I came to teaching with the knowledge, but have to thank the PAWG and CSSR/the i3 New England Network for the authentic teaching skills I employ everyday.”
Linda Chick, Site Coordinator, six-year veteran English teacher