Pinckney New Tech High received the distinction as an Ignite Spotlight School by the New Tech Network (NTN), a leading design partner for comprehensive K-12 school change.
NTN recognizes Spotlight Schools as schools that examine the strengths and challenges of their practices in the context of the NTN design pillars: outcomes that matter, teaching that engages, culture that empowers and technology that enables. These pillars organize the work of whole-school transformation, and help school communities understand the overarching goals that affect all phases of the school development process, helping students develop the skills required to succeed in college, career or civic life. Pinckney New Tech has been a member of the Network since 2010.
To receive this distinction, Pinckney New Tech engaged in collaborative reflection to connect its work to equitable teaching strategies, thereby highlighting an approach central to their success for meeting the needs of all learners. In the case of Pinckney New Tech, it’s their system for activating Student Voice that shines. Pinckney New Tech also detailed strategies for ongoing teacher development and how that translates to a meaningful classroom experience for students. Pinckney New Tech designed a learning opportunity about their featured practice – activating student voice – to support a national education community.
Pinckney New Tech is a small learning community within Pinckney Community High School that engages and empowers students through tech-rich project-based learning (PBL), prioritizing college, career, and civic life readiness. Director Julia McBride detailed the steps the school has taken to achieve Spotlight School status.
“The New Tech team, celebrating its 10-Year Anniversary this year, has always prioritized student voice,” McBride said. “That priority has evolved into a living, breathing component of our school’s system that we are proud to share outwardly as a model for others. It was our Student Voice leaders who encouraged our pursuit of this distinction, and they worked in partnership with the New Tech staff to reflect on our program elements and to submit the Spotlight School application in order to amplify our efforts.”
Pinckney New Tech’s graduating class of 2019 exceeded the county, state, and national average on the SAT. In its 10-Year history, the program touts a 98 percent graduation rate. Pinckney New Tech alumni continually express that their New Tech experience prepared them to excel in life beyond high school, helping them to grow into skillful collaborators, confidence presenters, and proud self-advocates. The New Tech staff prides itself on designing projects in service of developing aware, informed, critical, and active citizens of the country and world.