Savannah Chatham County Schools, GA - 2013 Transformation Award Winner

June 28, 2016 Mary Kate Appel

Transformation Award: For extending "the learning day" to keep students on the path to graduation.

Savannah Chatham County Public Schools saw a need to help students who had either dropped out of school or required numerous credits to graduate. They used Race to the Top Funds and the FuelEd prescriptive learning and remediation program to establish the Twilight Program, a blended afterschool program that helps students gain credits for courses they had failed or take additional courses they needed to complete to graduate. The first year, there were 108 students in the program, and they earned a total of 154 credits. 

Before the second year, they decided to expand the program to all high school students who either wanted to takes courses they had failed or those who wanted to take accelerated courses. That year, they had over 800 students enrolled in the program, and they earned over 1,600 credits. The 2012–13 school year was the third year for the program, and it continued to grow. Savannah Chatham had 1,500 students enrolled, and they earned over 1,800 credits.            

Today, other nearby district schools run their own afterschool programs, using the model Savannah Chatham established its first year. The Twilight Program has made it possible for many students to graduate on time with their cohort group. It has made a huge difference in the lives of students, giving them the opportunity to take courses in a nontraditional way with success. The Twilight Program has given them the opportunity to become successful high school graduates and continue on their pathway to a successful career.

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