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Academic Instruction Program
YouthBuild PCS’s academic instruction program equips students with the knowledge and skills needed to obtain a GED (General Education Development) diploma. Academic classes are taught in both English and Spanish, depending on the needs of the student. Academic assessments are administered at the beginning of the school year to establish baseline learning needs, and are subsequently administered throughout the school year to assess academic progress and to evaluate instruction. Students with special learning needs or who need more academic support receive specialized instruction.
YouthBuild PCS has a teacher/student ratio of 15:1. The ratio for students receiving specialized instruction is approximately 5:1. English Language Learner (ELL) students participate in Spanish GED preparation classes. These students also improve their English skills by participating in English as a Second Language (ESL) classes and then by reinforcing these skills on construction sites. The combination of ESL classes with English conversation at vocational placements results in dramatic improvements in students’ speaking and listening abilities.
Academics and occupational skills training are integrated at YouthBuild PCS. Lessons taught on the academic side are reinforced on the construction site, and in turn, construction and design examples are used in academic classes as well.
Personalized Learning Model
The YouthBuild PCS curriculum is based on the 2014 GED Standards and the Test of Adult Basic Education Skills, with a focus on the most important skills necessary for passing the GED and being ready for college and career training.
Student progress is assessed using the Common Core College and Career Readiness Standards for Adult Education (CCCRSAE). At YouthBuild PCS, we view assessments as opportunities to communicate with students about how they are progressing toward mastery of the material; evaluations are used to determine ultimate levels of expertise. Because each student is on an individual learning path focused on meeting the content standards he or she needs to progress towards obtaining his or her GED, students receive feedback based on Mastery Level of a standard. Students do not receive traditional grades on a grading scale.