April 25th, 2014

New Math Pathways for Cambridge Middle School Students

On March 4th, 2014 the Cambridge Public School District administration and School Committee amended the Academic Challenge Policy to allow for two math pathways in the CPS middle schools. The CALA community has advocated for this change for two years, and supports this decision, as it better enables middle school math teachers to meet the […]

September 1st, 2012

Introducing CPS’s new Academic Challenge Program Manager

I’m very happy to report that this week CPS Deputy Superintendent Carolyn Turk introduced the school district’s new Academic Challenge and Enrichment Support Program Manager. She is Paula Feynman, who has in recent years worked as a 6th grade science teacher in Sudbury, MA. She is very skilled in project-based learning and differentiating instruction, in […]

August 28th, 2012

Update on Academic Challenge from CPS District Leaders

Below are answers to questions that CALA coordinator Freedom Baird submitted to the School Committee in mid-August, around the issue of advanced learning, especially as it will be addressed in the new Upper Schools. The answers were prepared by Deputy Superintendent Carolyn Turk, and reviewed by Superintendent Jeff Young.

Cambridge Public […]

February 11th, 2012

CPS Academic Challenge Policy is Voted In

On February 7th, the Cambridge Public School Committee voted in a new Upper School Academic Challenge Policy, as part of the Innovation Agenda‘s reshaping of Cambridge’s middle grades. The complete text of the Policy is below.

Reporter Andy Metzger’s coverage of the night of the vote is in this Cambridge Chronicle article: “Cambridge School Committee […]

February 3rd, 2012

ISP Students Continue to Voice Concerns to Cambridge SC

James Robinson ran this article in the Cambridge Chronicle today: “Cambridge students block plan to end advanced study program”. Here’s an excerpt:

The ISP course is an advanced learning curriculum that has been available to Cambridge middle school students for over five decades through the Peabody and Kennedy-Longfellow schools. It now faces the […]

January 25th, 2012

CALA Members Respond to Academic Challenge Plan

Last week Cambridge Superintendent Jeffrey Young published his administration’s Academic Challenge Plan, which will be voted on by the School Committee on February 7th. Last night the Committee hosted a hearing for public comment on the Plan. More than 70 people attended, including several CALA members, many parents and students from the ISP community, and […]

January 17th, 2012

Cambridge Public Schools’ New Academic Challenge Plan

This evening Cambridge Public Schools’ Superintendent, Dr. Jeffrey Young will present the district’s new plan, Academic Challenge: The Foundation of Academic Excellence and Social Justice, which lays out how academic challenge for all students will be addressed in the middle grades under the Innovation Agenda. The complete plan is here, and appendices are here. This […]

December 6th, 2011

Q&A on Academic Challenge Policy and Related Topics

A new FAQ from Cambridge Public Schools‘ Superintendent Jeff Young was published yesterday. The FAQ is one of several answering questions about the Innovation Agenda currently being implemented in Cambridge’s middle Schools. This latest FAQ includes sections answering some questions about middle school math, Academic Challenge, the Intensive Studies Program, and advanced learners. The link […]