21st CCLC Spotlight on Oregon City
Sites: Jennings Lodge Elementary K-2 and Oregon City Service Learning Academy Charter High School
Oregon City Service Learning Academy (OCSLA)
OCSLA offers a wide array of academic and enrichment expanded learning
programs for their high school aged students. OCSLA has embraced time and learning as a key part of their instructional programs and view time as “the adjustable resource and academic equalizer”. OCSLA has
1) lengthened the school day by adding an 8th period for all students
2) lengthened the school year creating quarter “intersession” breaks where expanded learning opportunities can occur
3) developed a 4-day core program and a Friday service learning and internship program for all students
4) added before and after school enrichment and academic support activities
5) operated a 4 week summer school program.
OCSLA has developed great partners, including Lemelson-MIT, connecting OCSLAstudents to an in depth STEM education via the MIT, JV InvenTeams on Fridays. JV InvenTeams help students hone their hands-on skills and enrich their STEM education through invention-based design activities. Last spring, students worked on a hydroponics unit in which they learned about the following: how plants grow, different soil-less growing options, pumps, filters, and how to work with PVC and power-tools. Ultimately, they grew some salad greens in the system they built. The Horticulture class and Garden Club (see below) have taken over the systems and are using them to grow salad greens to be transplanted in the garden this spring. Students also completed a unit on shoe soles, which led the students through the inventing process by making a prototype of the shoe sole they had created.
OCSLA has partnered with Portland State University to offer the Math, Science, Engineering Achievement (MESA) program on campus every Friday. We recently had four MESA teams compete in the head to head MESA challenge against 21 other middle and high schools (over 60 teams!) Our teams all performed very well, and we walked away with 5 medals/ribbons, including 1st place for the entire competition! Our graduating seniors were also recognized and given cords for their two years in MESA.
Additionally, one of OCSLA’s two science teachers runs a successful horticulture program in which students have the opportunity to grow vegetables from seed and tend to an apple orchard and multiple blueberry plants. All food cultivated from the garden area is distributed to students, staff, and local food banks.
The second 21st CCLC site is at Jennings Lodge Elementary where students ages K-2 participate. At this site we have partnered with Playworks to provide structured play throughout our recess and PE times. This has allowed us to teach conflict resolution, build students’ social-emotional skills, and develop confidence and communication with our students by making use of traditionally unstructured time in the school day for learning. Additionally we have identified specific blocks of time within the school day to provide additional academic intervention and targeted and differentiated supports to meet the needs of all students at Jennings Lodge. Jennings Lodge partners with Community Education to offer After the Bell after school care programs, and we also have after school and evening STEAM and parent events that are appreciated by families.