ASCD Whole Child Bloggers

Oregon High School Honored with ASCD’s Vision in Action Award

Vision in Action

ASCD is honored to present Milwaukie High School, located in Milwaukie, Ore., with the 2013 Vision in Action: The ASCD Whole Child Award. This special award recognizes schools that move beyond a vision for educating the whole child to actions that result in learners who are knowledgeable, emotionally and physically healthy, civically active, artistically engaged, prepared for economic self-sufficiency, and ready for the world beyond formal schooling.

"We are pleased to name Milwaukie High School as our 2013 Vision in Action: The Whole Child Award winner," said ASCD Executive Director and CEO Dr. Gene R. Carter. "Milwaukie's staff members work tirelessly to improve their students' academic, social, and emotional growth; expand their educational practices; and sharpen the administration's focus on staff professional development, all to meet the needs of the whole child."

A Focus on Professional Development

The Milwaukie High School educators' dedication to the needs of the whole child was demonstrated by their focus on professional development that supported the concept of equity in action during the 2011–12 school year. Staff members committed themselves to addressing social justice and equity issues. School personnel have participated in an equity training program called, "Taking it Up," and the school administrative team will attend a five-day equity training event in the coming months.

To further support professional development goals, the school's administrative team formed an instructional leaders' team made up of teacher leaders and administrators that meets regularly to guide training that supports teaching and improving student engagement and individualized instruction.

Providing Student Support

Incoming students' reading and math proficiency are assessed by trained staff, and additional supplementary reading and math courses are provided as needed. Also, teams of staff members meet once a week with a group of school counselors, mental and physical health providers, social workers, and administrators to discuss ways to support at-risk students. These teams also collaborate to build individual intervention plans for these students. After implementing these initiatives, Milwaukie High School's educators have seen improvements in reading and math achievement in participating students, and the school's graduation rate has steadily improved beyond Oregon state's average.

In August, a state-of-the-art health center was opened on campus to meet students' needs. To fund this initiative, staff helped raise more than $600,000. The medical sponsor, Outside In, provides physical, emotional, and dental health services free to all students.

"The physical and emotional well-being of each student must be nurtured as a part of teaching and learning," said Mark Pinder, principal of Milwaukie High School. "When the whole child is educated at Milwaukie High, we are guaranteeing that we will produce a graduate ready to participate as an active, contributing community member."

ASCD congratulates the Milwaukie High School community on receiving this award.

Schools throughout North America applied for Vision in Action: The ASCD Whole Child Award. As the winner, Milwaukie High School sent five team members to be guests at ASCD's Annual Conference and Exhibit Show in Chicago, Ill., this past weekend, and the school will be featured on an upcoming Whole Child Podcast. ASCD will continue to share Milwaukie's expertise and exemplary practices with its 140,000 members and the larger education community.

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