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Roosevelt School Wins 'Golden Bell' Award for Innovative Program

The school's Project-Based Learning Program was recognized by the California School Boards Association.

Roosevelt School, Redwood City   File photo
Roosevelt School, Redwood City File photo
(The following information received by Patch from the Redwood City School District is reprinted here.)

Today, December 7, Roosevelt School will receive a California School Boards Association (CSBA) Golden Bell Award at the CSBA’s Annual Education Conference and Trade Show in San Diego.  The Golden Bell Award, now in its 34th year, recognizes public school programs that are innovative and sustainable, make a demonstrated difference for students, and focus on meeting the needs of all students.

Roosevelt won for its Project-Based Learning (PBL) program.  PBL organizes curriculum, instruction and assessment around carefully crafted “problems” students are challenged to solve.  Students gather and apply knowledge from multiple disciplines in their quest for solutions.  This instructional practice is guided by instructors who act as cognitive coaches, teaching students critical thinking, problem solving and collaborative skills as they identify problems, formulate hypotheses, ask significant questions, conduct data searches, utilize powerful thinking, and formulate solutions to the problem.    

“We are so proud of Roosevelt School for winning a Golden Bell award,” said Superintendent Jan Christensen.  “Roosevelt piloted project-based learning in a few grades during 2008 and the program was so successful that the school board voted to adopt PBL school-wide in 2010.”  

PBL has been a very popular program since it was adopted at Roosevelt, and is drawing new families to Roosevelt School, an elementary school that offers transitional kindergarten through eighth grade classes.

“My children have benefited greatly from project-based learning and it's so wonderful to see the dedication and hard work of Roosevelt's teachers and staff being recognized with this incredible honor,” said Roosevelt parent Trish Taylor, who is traveling to San Diego to be present at the awards ceremony on Saturday.

Roosevelt was one of 59 schools to receive a Golden Bell award in 2013.   Experts from school districts and county offices of education made up the 11-member judging panel that reviewed the written entries and made the initial recommendations for the awards.  On-site validators assessed the programs in action.  This year’s award will be given to school districts and county offices of education that are helping students achieve through after-school programs, mentoring, instructional interventions, scheduling changes, use of data and other innovations.

“Project-based learning is effective with all students,” said Roosevelt Principal Trish Girardi. 

“PBL is ideal for classrooms where students with mixed abilities can pool their talents collaboratively.  Student engagement, motivation, improved attendance, increased class participation, higher-order thinking, skill development and improved communication are all benefits of using project-based learning in the classroom.”

Families who do not live in the Roosevelt boundary may apply to attend Roosevelt through the District’s schools of choice program. (http://www.rcsdk8.net/schoolsofchoice) Applications are due on January 10, 2014.  For more information about Roosevelt School, please contact Principal Trish Girardi at 650-369-5597.  Roosevelt School is located at 2223 Vera St, one block east of Alameda de las Pulgas.  

CSBA is the non-profit education association representing the elected officials who govern public school districts and county offices of education.  With a membership of nearly 1,000 educational agencies statewide, CSBA brings together school governing boards, and district and county office administrators to advocate for effective policies that advance the education and well-being of the state’s more than 6 million school-age children.

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