Hawthorne Math and Science Academy: Creating a Community of Learners
In this archive, Joaquin R. Hernández, principal of Hawthorne Math and Science Academy, a Los Angeles County high school, shares the actual steps he and his staff have taken to help their high poverty, high minority student population perform well above the statewide average and maintain a decile 10 state ranking.
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Joaquin Hernández (Primary)
Hawthorne Math and Science Academy
Hawthorne Math and Science Academy (HMSA) in Los Angeles County, California serves a high poverty, high minority student population that performs well above its peers and has received a "similar schools ranking" of 10 (on a 10-point scale) on the California Academic Performance Index (API) for the past four years. HMSA is a charter high school dependent on the Hawthorne School District that does not base admittance on academic grades or test scores, but rather uses a series of assignments that are stringent on deadlines. In 2009, Newsweek ranked HMSA the 57th best high school in the nation. Also in 2009, US News and World Report ranked HMSA the 54th best high school in the nation. While roughly 40% of Hispanic high school students scored proficient or above in English language arts and math statewide, well over 80% of Hispanic high school students at HMSA scored proficient or above. In contrast to many large and impersonal high schools across the nation, HMSA is a small school, which fosters academic excellence, trust, safety, empowerment, and high expectations. In this webinar, Principal Joaquin R. Hernández will share how maintaining high expectations, enforcing rules consistently, and creating buy-in from and communication among students, teachers, and parents have helped the school achieve these results.
This webinar is presented by the American Institutes for Research and WestEd as partners in the California Comprehensive Center to highlight high performing schools making a difference in student achievement. To learn more about Hawthorne Math and Science Academy, please read the school profile. Two other recently profiled middle schools include the American Indian Public Charter School and Santa Fe Middle School.
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Downloads For Your Own Use
- Chat Log for Webinar, "Hawthorne Math and Science Academy"
- MP 3 Audio Recording for Session webinar: "Hawthorne Math and Science Academy: Creating a Community of Learners."
- MP4 Media Recording, "Hawthorne Math and Science Academy: Creating a Community of Learners"
- Parent-Guardian Volunteer Agreement
- Parent-Student-School Compact: 2008-2009
- PDF for webinar “Hawthorne Math and Science Academy: Creating a Community of Learners.”
- PDF Handout of Slides for "Hawthorne Math and Science Academy."
- Student Compact-Model for Success: 2008-2009
- Student-Parent-School Compact: 2009-2010
This report, prepared by REL West, finds that the high school program for college preparation begins in 9th grade and that making up missed preparatory courses and academic content is likely to be difficult for students who put off college-preparatory work until later in their high school career. A two-page synopsis of the report, Off Track: What’s Behind Declining College Admission Rates for California’s Minorities?, is also available.
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