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December 15, 2012 / erinroche

“Introduction to Magnet Cluster Schools,” by Erin Roche, Principal of Prescott School, Chicago

In Chicago, magnet cluster schools provide students with a range of academic options in their neighborhood communities. The Magnet Cluster Program offers six areas of specialization, and schools usually focus on one specific area. The programs offered include the following subjects:

Math/Science: This accelerated curriculum seeks to advance student achievement and improve both teaching and learning methods. Over the course of their elementary school years, students advance toward an understanding of abstract concepts in both subjects.

Fine and Performing Arts: This specialization helps students acquire competence in digital media and encourages students to explore a broad base of artistic abilities, including music, dance, drama, and the visual arts.

Literature and Writing: Magnet Cluster schools focusing on literature and writing encourage students to develop into creative, effective writers. Parent participation is stressed along with numerous literary events throughout the year.

World Language Program: This program encourages students to develop proficiency in a language other than English. Enrichment programs take place during the summer as well as the academic year.

About the Author: Erin Roche is a veteran educator with more than two decades of classroom and administrative experience.

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