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What is Higher-Powered Learning? - Part 1

Monday, December 12, 2016 by Elizabeth Anthony

What is High-Powered Learning? Part-OneYou may recognize this picture from ACE’s 2016 Annual Appeal Video:

As Fr. Scully says in the video, Nelvin had struggled in Language Arts, and this photo was taken after he recently achieved a perfect score on his spelling test. What the video does not tell you, though, is that Nelvin has progressed through nearly two grade-levels of reading material in a single semester thanks to his amazing ACE teacher, his own hard work, and his school’s new blended-learning program. Want to know more about blended learning? Read on!

Since 2012, members of the Alliance for Catholic Education have implemented blended-learning programs in seven schools. The first six of these projects were led by TJ D’Agostino, who has taken a step back to focus on the AMAZING work he is doing in Haiti.

The seventh project, however, marks a new era. For the first time, ACE is implementing a blended learning program in a Notre Dame ACE Academy. This year, the ACE blended-learning team consisting of Fr. Nate Wills, CSC, Sean Wolohan, and myself helped the teachers and leader of Holy Angels Catholic School, a Notre Dame ACE Academy in Indianapolis, launch a full-scale blended-learning program. Holy Angels joined the Notre Dame ACE Academies network this year, and it serves about 100 students in grades PK–6 (including Nelvin!), 99% of whom are African-American and 99% of whom qualify for free-or-reduced-priced lunch. By incorporating the academic personalization and rigor of blended learning into the broader model of strong school culture at this Notre Dame ACE Academy (and others in the future!), ACE aspires to deliver the best and most authentically Catholic education possible. 

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About the Author

Elizabeth Anthony

Elizabeth Anthony

Elizabeth Anthony served as the Associate Director of Blended Learning for the Alliance for Catholic Education (ACE). Elizabeth joined the ACE team after graduating from the University of Notre Dame in May, 2016. As an undergraduate student, Elizabeth was part of the Hesburgh-Yusko Scholars Program, worked on various blended-learning implementation projects both in the United States and abroad, conducted research for the Clayton Christensen Institute for Disruptive Innovation, and studied philosophy.