• Category 2

    Selected in 2017

  • Grades: k - 5
    School Setting: rural
    Town Population: 13,500
    Student Enrollment: 530
    Student Demographics:

    Black/African American: 6.2%
    White/Caucasian: 56.3%
    Hispanic: 29.2%
    Hawaiian/Pacific Islander: 2.3%
    Asian: 1.3%
    Native American: 0%
    Other: 4.7%

    Teacher/Student Ratio: 1:17
    % Reduced Lunch: 68%
    % ELL Learners: 18%
    Founded: 2002
  • PRINCIPAL:
    Marcie Wilson
  • CONTACT:
    737 N Clear Creek Road
    Hendersonville, NC 28792
    828-697-4760
    mmwilson@hcpsnc.org
Clear Creek Elementary School
Hendersonville, NC
“We continue to raise the rigor in every classroom through implementing new strategies and practices. "
Describe the most successful activity your school has initiated to strengthen ties to your community.
One of the highlights of our school is our Community Cub Family (CCF). This community partnership ensures that students and parents feel welcomed, supported, and valued at our school. CCF supports our students with food, clothing, school supplies, and other necessary items. For example, Upward Christian Fellowship and the Henderson County Baptist Association provide backpacks full of food for almost 75 students each week. Our local Rotarians donate a dictionary to every third grader each year. Our principal and the North Henderson Graduation Coach coordinated high school students to be paired with a Cub to build a positive relationship centered around using appropriate social, emotional, and academic skills. It is our hope that, through this partnership, our Cubs will strive to be the best version of themselves. Through the partnership with the Community Cub Family Organization, all students are able to “Achieve success at CCS!”
Describe your school culture and explain changes you’ve taken to improve it.
Clear Creek’s Cub with Character program defines our school culture. Our teachers, or Cubmasters, model these expectations for behavior and explicitly teach our students to be respectful, be responsible, be kind, and be safe throughout all areas of our school. Cubmasters positively reinforce expected behavior with a variety of individual student, class, and school-wide rewards. Our Cub with Character culture continues to improve through the implementation of tenets from Faye’s Teaching with Love and Logic, Dweck’s Mindset: The Psychology of Success, and Covey’s Seven Habits of Happy Kids. These resources address social and emotional growth of our students by empowering them to take ownership of their actions, their responses to others, and problem solving. These resources also impact the academic and emotional growth of our students and staff.
Describe how data is used to improve student achievement and inform decision making.
Clear Creek Elementary is able to raise and sustain the success of our Cubs by taking advantage of a variety of data sources and employing a school-wide process. Our process begins with our principal and school leadership team evaluating the data to determine trends in school performance. In grade level and vertical Professional Learning Communities (PLC), our teachers determine implications of the data for their student population. Finally, our teachers identify particular students and personalize the instructional strategies to meet their needs. For example, our process for evaluating EVAAS student prediction data begins with the principal and the school leadership team analyzing the EVAAS data and determining the gap between proficiency and our school goals. Next, our PLC’s identify the number of students needed to increase our predicted proficiency. Finally, individual teachers identify the students they will target to meet our goal. At CCS, data drives every decision made.
Describe the program or initiative that has had the greatest positive effect on student achievement, including closing achievement or opportunity gaps, if applicable.
Our Cubs experience highly effective, research-based instructional strategies through our focus on gradual release. It includes whole group instruction, guided practice, independent practice, and differentiated small group instruction. The first step is whole-group, explicit instruction. Teachers ensure high levels of learning by modeling strategies and providing support. Small groups target each skill and are based on data gathered during our whole group instruction. After receiving whole group and small group instruction our Cubs are prepared to independently practice their standards through a variety of interactive stations. A third round of instruction may include focused practice with the classroom teacher, assistant, reading teacher, or tutor. The specific, repetitive instruction develops the skills they need to meet their individual learning goals. This tiered support system proves to be successful with our students.
Explain how Title I funds are used to support your improvement efforts.
CCS believes the best way to support our Cubs is through hands-on opportunities. We assess the needs of students and design appropriate plans for those who need additional support. Our Title 1 funds allowed us to continue with our SCHOLARS program by funding a certified teacher to plan and implement additional whole and small group phonics instruction. With the rollout of MTSS, we were also able to fund 5 MTSS Interventionist positions. Another key role funded by our Title 1 funds is the Parent Involvement Coordinator (PIC). This bilingual PIC allows Clear Creek to have an additional staff member devoted to communication with all families. We also use our funds to provide teachers and students with purposeful tools to use in the classroom and at home. One of the most effective resources are leveled readers that allow us to instruct our students during guided reading sessions on their individual instructional levels. All resources are tied to student goals.
Describe your philosophy of school change or improvement.
Clear Creek’s philosophy is to provide a culture where every student can “Achieve Success at CCS.” Cubmasters are as dedicated to their own personal growth as that of our students. As a result our Cubs experience the same highly effective, research-based instructional strategies in every classroom, every day, every year. Our Literacy Framework, Oral Language Development, and Writing Across Content Areas are supported by ongoing professional development and sustained through modeled lessons, grade level PLC’s, vertical conversations, and community meetings with our instructional coach. Due to the noted improvement, we continue to raise the rigor in every classroom through implementing new strategies and practices. Our philosophy continues to evolve to meet the challenges of our changing student population and our students’ individualized needs. In order for our Cubs to “Achieve Success at CCS,” our Cubmasters continue to learn and grow together.
Identify the critical professional development activities you use to improve teaching and student learning.
Teachers at CCS participate in school, district, and state professional development. Literacy is a good example of the ways in which professional development has strengthened the achievement of CCS students. Because many of our students struggle with expressive and receptive language, we implemented a professional development program around oral and written language. Teachers learned how to increase opportunities in their classrooms for student talk and students learned how to better express themselves. After witnessing deficient literacy skills and a lack of confidence in our readers, our school embraced professional learning around a highly-structured literacy block. Teachers learned how to begin instruction with effective whole-group lessons and continue with targeted small-group teaching. Guided reading with their teacher and structured centers work became consistent experiences for students throughout our school regardless of grade level, thus improving student learning.
Describe specific programs in place to ensure that families are involved in the success of your school and students.
At Clear Creek, we believe that students can only focus on academics once their physiological and safety needs are met. To meet those needs, we are fortunate to have an organization, Community Cub Family (CCF), which includes families and community members eager to invest in our school. The president, a father in our school, established a program whereby each morning, six fathers open our students’ car doors with a smile and a warm greeting. Our CCF also organizes events to increase parental involvement including a Fall Festival, Father/Daughter Dance, Mother/Son Game Night, and Movie Night. CCF also organizes parent volunteers for school events, tutoring, and other activities to support the student-learning environment. Due to these successful partnerships, we have experienced significant school improvement, increased participation in school activities, and a greater sense of school pride. Celebrating our successes with the community invites additional partnerships for our school.
What is the single most important factor in the success of your school that others could replicate?
Our Community Cub Family targets the academic, emotional, physical, and social needs of every Cub. The CCF is comprised of teachers, support staff, parents, businesses, churches, and community members. CCF organizes events at different times, on different topics, and with different levels of parent involvement to maximize participation from all families. During Lunch and Learn events, parents share in a lesson and eat lunch with their child. Science Night engages families in science experiments. For our Fall Festival, community members donate supplies. The diverse leadership makes our CCF initiative unique. A father volunteers as the head of our leadership team which has increased male participation. Members supervise students for special teacher meals, volunteer to ride the bus, chaperone field trips, and read aloud to classes. This team also includes several bilingual members serving as liaisons during parent events, which encourages participation from our Spanish-speaking community.
What are your school’s top two goals for the next year?
Although we are pleased with our current success, our commitment to growing greatness together demands a continued commitment to expanding our partnership with our parents. We will continue to poll our parents at every parent involvement event regarding their needs for future events and use this information to identify opportunities to grow and support our families involvement. Our next step is to take the thinking process within each of our frameworks to a deeper level. Therefore, our second goal is to provide professional development opportunities on questioning strategies and learning opportunities that incorporate higher-order questioning and abstract thinking strategies. We want our Cubs and Cubmasters to embrace problem-solving skills that will prepare them for college, career, and beyond. Our instructional coach and teacher leaders will provide a variety of professional development modeling such strategies.
Stats
  • Category 2

    Selected in 2017

  • Grades: k - 5
    School Setting: rural
    Town Population: 13,500
    Student Enrollment: 530
    Student Demographics:

    Black/African American: 6.2%
    White/Caucasian: 56.3%
    Hispanic: 29.2%
    Hawaiian/Pacific Islander: 2.3%
    Asian: 1.3%
    Native American: 0%
    Other: 4.7%

    Teacher/Student Ratio: 1:17
    % Reduced Lunch: 68%
    % ELL Learners: 18%
    Founded: 2002
  • PRINCIPAL:
    Marcie Wilson
  • CONTACT:
    737 N Clear Creek Road
    Hendersonville, NC 28792
    828-697-4760
    mmwilson@hcpsnc.org