George Lucas Educational Foundation

Schools That Work

Our flagship series highlights practices and case studies from K-12 schools and districts that are improving the way students learn.

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Students learn how to share and listen to opposing beliefs with empathy.

Examples That Work

Proud graduates standing on the bleachers in the gymnasium under the large Urban Prep banner as family members take pictures

Urban Prep Charter School changes student outcomes through rituals, relationships, and respect.

1 60
An outdoor covered hallway with 25+ logos painted on the wall and door

Tapping your community for funds, resources, and labor isn't easy, but with planning, persistence, and good will, rallying local support for a major school project benefits everyone.

42 1,743 views
Dad and daughter together smiling

Attract parent volunteers by giving them their own space and appointing a coordinator whose job it is to make them feel welcome, comfortable, and needed.

8 98 8,471 views
Two boys at a table looking at cards printed with various items to determine want versus need

Franchising allows a single principal to lead multiple campuses concurrently. These individuals must be proven, trusted leaders given the flexibility to focus on the best results.

38 1,743 views
Teacher holding up Dorian's Rocket Math certificate that says he rocketed through subtraction facts

Layering incentives at classroom, grade, and schoolwide levels creates a culture of positivity and achievement where students celebrate milestones in their individual and shared learning.

8 921 7,724 views
Piggy-Bank Friday: Life Skills Through Financial Literacy

Through the Piggy-Bank Friday program, K-5 students at Walter Bracken STEAM Academy have saved over $30,000 in one year.

229 74,678 views
Garden-Based Learning: Engaging Students in Their Environment

From fairy gardens to garden towers, Walter Bracken STEAM Academy transformed its school grounds into a student-centered, garden-learning wonderland.

7 2,026 15,383 views

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Daily Assemblies: Deepening Relationships Through Ritual and Recognition

Students at Urban Prep Charter Academies are celebrated, supported, and empowered through their daily community assembly.

2 375 25,104 views
Mc2 Stem High School | Grades 9-12

Innovative and effective practices at Cleveland's MC2 STEM High School are driving learning and higher achievement for students in a district where every student qualifies for free- or reduced-price meals.

67 17,192 views
Low-Stakes Writing: Writing to Learn, Not Learning to Write

University Park Campus School uses low-stakes writing to scaffold instruction, develop student voice, and foster critical thinkers.

14 810 37,254 views
Advisory: Building Relationships for Student Success

Nashville Big Picture High School shares many ways to build intentional relationships with students -- strategies that can work at schools of any size.

11 233 14,972 views
photo of a teacher-librarian in the library

A 21st-century librarian can inspire a school by modeling responsive teaching, advocating for student involvement, facilitating new approaches to writing, and encouraging user-centered spaces.

2 586 15,946 views
A principal and two teachers listening

At Cochrane Collegiate Academy, teachers credit their principal with helping them continually improve their practice through effective PD, ongoing support, and mutual trust.

3 387 15,697 views
Teacher sitting at a table working with three young boys using markers

Resources on This Page: Global Competence Unit Plans International School Symposium

4 814 15,697 views

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