Pittsfield is a small, rural community of about 4,500 residents located in Merrimack County, in the heart of Suncook Valley. The district is located a short distance from Concord, Manchester, the Seacoast and Lakes Region. Pittsfield Middle High School is a public middle high school serving approximately 270 students in grades 7-12. Approximately 42% of students qualify for Free or Reduced Lunch. The mission of the Pittsfield School District is to ensure that all learners are supported in the achievement of their college and career goals through student centered learning practices and strong partnerships with the community. Students are encouraged to become self-directed, lifelong learners who demonstrate a high level of knowledge, skills, and social–emotional health through self-advocacy, self-governance, and commitment to community.
The greatest accomplishment resulting from the involvement with the i3 New England Network is the weekly professional activities of the Late Start Wednesday. Late Start Wednesday is a 90-minute period where the middle/high school faculty meets for professional development in a collaborative environment. The weekly meeting is an incubator for transformative thinking that supports all the other innovative strategies in the school. Another accomplishment is the i3 Team, a group of ten students and faculty members that meet one day a month to improve professional practice through structured conversations guided by protocols developed through the i3 New England Network. The outcomes of these conversations are reported to Common Planning Time Teams for direct application to instruction and assessment practices.
Sheila Ward served as Site Coordinator for the i3 New England Network, as well as the Extended Learning Opportunities Coordinator, for the first four years of the project. The i3 work is currently supported by Warren Billings, four-year veteran Spanish teacher, and Kristen Lewis, six-year veteran elementary school teacher.