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EXCEL TOGETHER
SCHOOL PILOT PROGRAM

Excel Together Greater Philadelphia brings secondary schools in the region an opportunity to pilot the innovative online CSM Course to combat learning loss and earn students college credit and employment opportunities

 

One course, many benefits

The self-paced, online CSM Course uses next-generation technology to simultaneously personalize instruction in both academic knowledge and how students learn, feel, and behave. Through this course, your students will gain:​

  • key career math, literacy, and problem solving, including deep remediation to 5th grade skills

  • college credit (typically in quantitative reasoning)

  • hiring preferences from local employers

  • an employability skills certificate

  • a Credly digital certificate issued by the American Council on Education (the main coordinating body for higher education in the US)

  • improved learning strategies and behaviors: learning on your own, meta-cognition, attention to detail, persistence

  • valuable mindsets including growth mindset, an intention to excel, and self-efficacy

  • optionally, an embedded mini-course on building an “internal career coach” with the skills of making career decisions throughout your life

 

One course, many uses

CSM has a variety of different applications in grades 8-12, including:

  • College prep class

  • Math/STEM class

  • CTE / employability skills

  • Alternative education 

  • Social-emotional learning (SEL)

  • 8th grade bridge-to-high-school

  • RTI / deep remediation

  • Summer or before-after school program​

CSM may also be use if your school/district engages in adult or community education

 

THE EVIDENCE

EFFECTIVE AT TEACHING ACADEMIC SKILLS

An evaluation by Stanford Research Institute, comparing CSM to ALEKS from McGraw-Hill and MyFoundationsLab from Pearson in a study of opportunity youth showed that CSM had the highest math and literacy gains relative to classroom learning, as well as the highest student engagement.

PREPARES STUDENTS FOR COLLEGE

In a high school equivalency program at Cuyahoga Community College, 28% of CSM completers registered on their own for associate degree programs (none were expected), and 80% have either completed their degree or have multi-semester persistence (which is many-fold national averages for this population).

PREPARES STUDENTS FOR THE WORKFORCE

Energy utility PEPCO found in a program preparing high school graduates for high paying lineman positions that after completing CSM, passing rates on the industry-standard CAST test (which has a challenging math component) rose from 20% to 67%.

A CURRICULUM FOR EVERYONE

A Philadelphia-based health insurance company uses CSM for corporate upskilling. Unanimously, employees found CSM challenging, motivating and made them better at their jobs. Interestingly, 25% of those taking CM already had bachelor degree, and another 25% had advanced degrees, all taking the same course. While different people need different skills, CSM’s high performance competencies have universal value.

 
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ABOUT CSM

The self-paced, online CSM Course has 5 components:

  • An integrated math, literacy and problem solving curriculum that includes deep remediation to 5th grade math and literacy. The academic skills are work and life contextualized but not “dumbed down” -- while the math portion does not include algebra, it has still earns a recommendation from the American Council on Education for 3 semester hours of credit in quantitative reasoning at the baccalaureate level.

  • Next-generation adaptive learning technology that monitors student learning strategies and meta-cognition, frustration/persistence, and other non-cognitive behaviors, and which uses many techniques from social/education psychology and behavioral economics to build growth mindset, intrinsic motivation, an intention to excel, and self-efficacy, the prerequisite belief that you can succeed.

  • The optional embedded Career Strategies course that teaches the differences between jobs and careers, how careers are built from promotions, how a living wage is a good salary target that leads to high life satisfaction, how to put purpose and passion into any job, and how most people change careers during their life (and how to do this successfully). Most students lack this basic framework for thinking about life and career, and this will make your college/career counseling more effective.

  • The CSM+ Courses for students who complete CSM quickly in a seat-time environment, that builds advanced, college-level critical thinking and problem solving.

  • The CSM coaching suite that includes free “lightweight” professional development to develop Certified CSM Coaches for high fidelity of implementation, as well as the advanced CSM Toolkit for coaches and unlimited support.

Running on laptop and mobile devices with low bandwidth requirements, CSM takes most students 20-60 hours to complete, roughly as long as a semester course.  However, students with mild disabilities, low English proficiency or deep remediation needs may take longer (though almost all students can complete CSM given time and support). The course can be run either in a blended learning classroom, or as an online course with the student working independently.  When students are using CSM outside of the classroom, it reports not only time logged in, but also time on task.


The CSM Certificate currently earns college credit at local colleges including Drexel Goodwin college, Montgomery County Community College*, Thomas Edison State University*, Wilmington University, and Harcum College*, and we expect this number to double or triple by this summer. In addition, CSM earns college credit with many online colleges, including the three largest: Southern New Hampshire College*, Western Governors University*, and APU* (earning key math credit at those colleges with asterisks).

 

PILOT PROGRAM DESCRIPTION & REQUIREMENTS

LOCATION

This program is open to public, charter, and private secondary schools in Greater Philadelphia (Philadelphia, Bucks, Montgomery, Delaware, Chester, Burlington, Gloucester, Camden, Salem, and New Castle counties).

PROGRAM DURATION AND TIME FRAME

Students should be expected to work on CSM at least 60 hours or course completion, whichever comes first.  Students can use CSM during summer programs, school year classes, or afterschool classes. Students must be registered and working by October 31, 2021, and may continue to work on CSM however long they need to complete the course (e.g. through the 2021-2022 school year or beyond).

PROGRAM SIZE AND STUDENT TYPE

At least 10 students must take CSM, from 8th to 12th grade. Students of all academic abilities and whether college- or workforce-bound can benefit.

PROGRAM FORMAT

CSM is very flexible - it can be a standalone program, or incorporated into other courses or with other material. It allows very flexible scheduling: as an intensive "boot camp" (students working for 4 hours per day for 3 weeks), as a fulltime semester class, or as a half-time year-long class. CSM has advanced materials (the CSM+ courses) for students who complete CSM early.

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

All instructors must complete the High Performance Coaching professional development program (resulting in becoming a Certified CSM Coach), which is a free, online, self-paced 6-hour course on the distance learning, the CSM instructional philosophy, and use of the CSM Coaching Toolkit.

DATA COLLECTION

To help schools and SeeMore understand program performance and improve subsequent implementation, schools will collect qualitative or quantitative data to assess program effectiveness  (we are open to many data options).

 
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