The A+ Schools program is an Arts-based program that is research based and often used for school reform. Schools in the A+ Program are public schools that have the same requirements as other North Carolina Public Schools as far as teaching the Common Core and assessing students with the End-of-Grade Tests and other state assessments, but A+ students also show what they have learned through performances, exhibits, and sometimes portfolios.
Teachers at A+ Schools are trained in the A+ Philosophy and Essentials, which shape the learning environment, administrative approach, climate, and teaching practices of the school. (To learn more about the 8 Essentials of A+ Schools, visit our page that outlines them here.) A+ Teachers also focus on integration. In core classrooms, those teachers integrate the Arts, and in the Arts classrooms, encore teachers integrate the core curriculum.
At the state level, A+ Schools are a network of almost 50 schools throughout North Carolina that communicate and supports each other on the district, state, and national level. The A+ Schools Program first began in North Carolina but now have a National A Plus Consortium as the A+ Program is present in Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Arkansas. Our A+ Coordinator meets regularly with the Arts/Specialists' Team, serves as a liaison for the Core and Encore Teachers, and communicates regularly with the NC A+ Schools Program Director and staff. The NC A+ Schools from all over the state meet at least twice a year in a central location for networking and professional development and other times in webinars throughout the year.