High Schools That Work ( HSTW ) has identified a set of Key Practices that impact student achievement through development of multiple programs of study that prepare students for postsecondary studies and careers. These Key Practices provide direction and meaning to comprehensive school improvement:

1. High Expectations
Motivate more students to meet higher standards by integrating high expectations into classroom practices and providing frequent feedback.

2. Program of Study
Require each student to complete an upgraded academic core and a concentration.

3. Academic Studies
Teach more students the essential concepts of the college-preparatory curriculum by encouraging them to apply academic content and skills to real-world problems and projects.

4. Career/technical studies
Provide more students access to intellectually challenging career/technical studies in high-demand fields that emphasize the higher-level academic and problem-solving skills needed in the workplace and in further education.

5. Work-Based Learning
Enable students and their parents to choose from programs that integrate challenging high school studies and work-based learning and are planned by educators, employers and students.

6. Teachers Working Together
Provide cross-disciplinary teams of teachers time and support to work together to help students succeed in challenging academic and career/technical studies.

7. Students Actively Engaged
Engage students in academic and career/technical classrooms in rigorous and challenging proficient-level assignments using research-based instructional strategies and technology.

8. Guidance
Involve students and their parents in a guidance and advisement system that develops positive relationships and ensures completion of an accelerated program of study with an academic or career/technical concentration.

9. Extra Help
Provide a structured system of extra help to assist students in completing accelerated programs of study with high-level academic and technical content.

10. Culture of continuous improvement
Use data continually to improve school culture, organization, management, curriculum and instruction to advance student learning.

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