Why does DaVinci Academy follow a modified year-round calendar?adminDaVinci Academy follows a “ modified year-round” school calendar: students start school the second week of August and continue through the third week of June each year, with approximately 6 weeks for a summer break. The rationale for this calendar is that students retain more over the short break, and it reduces the time spent gearing up and re-teaching each fall. We take more frequent breaks during the school year and find that the breaks are good for both students and teachers as they help keep both from burning out during the year. Breaks also provide teachers and administrators time to review data, refresh lesson plans based on that data, and prepare for the next unit of instruction.
How does DaVinci Academy compare to other schools?adminThe Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) tracks and lists data and results for all schools in Minnesota. View DaVinci Academy's School Report Card to see information about our school demographics, test results, academic progress and performance and more. In 2016, DaVinci Academy was named a Reward School for the 6th year in a row. DaVinci Academy is one of only 3 Minnesota charter schools that have received the Reward School designation for all six years since the Multiple Measurement rating (MMR) system was introduced in 2011-12. Also in 2016, DaVinci Academy was one of the eight schools in Minnesota to be nominated by the Commissioner of Education to apply to be a National Blue Ribbon School. In 2015, out of the 335 Blue Ribbon Schools nationwide, only 15 were charter schools. (more…)
What is an “Intersession”?adminDaVinci Academy’s Intersession Program offers students additional opportunities to grow and learn. During intersessions, regular classes are suspended and students are given the opportunity to develop a deeper understanding of a particular subject area of their choosing. Intersession is voluntary and curriculum costs vary depending on the topics being offered.
What is differentiation?adminDifferentiated instruction is a teaching discipline based on the premise that instructional approaches should vary and be adapted for individual students in the classroom. Differentiated instruction provides students with multiple options for taking in information, making sense of the ideas being presented, and showing mastery. At DaVinci Academy, differentiated instruction is used in every subject. Classroom teaching is a blend of whole-class, group and individual instruction.
What is Core Knowledge Sequence?adminThe Core Knowledge Sequence movement is an educational reform based on the premise that a grade-by-grade core of common learning is necessary to ensure a sound and fair education. Simply put, knowledge builds on knowledge. The more you know, the more you are able to learn. The movement was started by Dr. E. D. Hirsch, Jr., author of Cultural Literacy: What Every American Needs to Know and The Schools We Need, and is based on a large body of research in cognitive psychology, as well as a careful examination of several of the world's fairest and most effective school systems. Due to the completeness and rigor of the curriculum, students are able to achieve the most important goals for education -- greater reading comprehension, the ability to think critically and solve problems, and higher test scores.
Does DaVinci Academy provide Special Education Services?adminIn serving the needs of all students, we provide special education services as required by state and federal laws. Parents may request an assessment for their child to determine eligibility. That assessment will be administered by DaVinci Academy Special Education professionals. Our teachers may also recommend assessment. A Child Study Team reviews the needs of each identified student before testing begins. See Policy 608 for more information on special educational services.