In 2003, Project Reflect opened Smithson-Craighead Academy (SCA), the first charter school in Middle Tennessee. SCA serves approximately 260 children in grades K-4, offering strong education with emphasis in math and literacy as well as specialized intervention and tutoring programs to help at-risk children overcome obstacles and achieve academic success. Shortly after opening, SCA was recognized as one of the top five elementary schools in Davidson County, and in 2010, SCA had the highest TCAP scores of any charter school in MNPS.
Highlights of this educational program include:
- A school schedule that provides over two, extra days of instruction each month, the equivalent of two, extra weeks of school each year and twice the math and literacy a traditional school can offer. Our schedule is Monday through Thursday, 7:30am to 4:00pm and Fridays, 7:30am to 12:30pm. (PREP is offered on Fridays from 1:00pm to 4:00pm for those students who wish to remain.)
- Data-driven instruction and project-based learning.
- Differentiated instruction – reading groups, small math groups, one-on-one tutoring.
- Use of higher level thinking techniques – asking open-ended questions, providing sentence starters.
- Use of cooperative learning strategies – kits, buddy reading, learning groups.
- Inclusion of special needs students in classes – all students working collectively in the classroom setting with accommodations for special needs students captured in a detailed IEP.
- Use of Title I and Literacy Coaches.
- Two, dual-certified teachers (regular and special education certified teachers) are available for meetings and consultations.
- Computer lab to support Common CORE goals while allowing for individualized pacing and instruction.
- Library to support our literacy requirement of 30 minutes of reading each night.
- Teachers who have professional development every week so that they are always offering the best practices in the classroom.
- Three meals per day for all students.
- Character development through a school-wide discipline plan that encourages responsibility and accountability through self reflection.
- Foster grandparents in classrooms who are provided through a partnership with FiftyForward.