When learning is Personalized and Relevant, students will be Engaged and prepared for Postsecondary success. This is the theory of action behind PREP, an innovative, holistic approach to learning designed by educators in Portland Public Schools’ alternative high schools. PREP schools integrate project-based instruction with career connected learning experiences and social emotional support to remove barriers for underserved students and create enlivening learning opportunities for all students.
Aligned with our district’s vision, PREP’s ultimate goal is for all students to graduate from high school as compassionate critical thinkers, able to collaborate and solve problems and prepared to lead a more socially just world.
PREP is based in PPS' Multiple Pathways to Graduation Department and is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education’s Education Innovation and Research (EIR) program through a multi-year grant awarded in October, 2017.
Finished and ready to roll! Students at Alliance High School (Meek campus) completed this tiny house, now home to a Portland resident who had been camping on the street. The year-long project began with a course called "Mathufacturing" developed by math teachers Miguel Meija and Catherine Ordway and CTE-Manufacturing teacher Jerry Eaton. The class first studied with community partner Jackie Santa Lucia, an architect, educator and co-founder of Your Street Your Voice, a program that teaches young people about architecture and urban planning through an equity lens. Together they explored how math and manufacturing could address social and racial injustice in their community and decided to design tiny houses to address the critical need for housing in Portland. Students applied geometry, algebra, and computer-aided design skills to develop plans and budgets which they presented to a virtual panel of local architects and city planners. "This project made math fun!" said one student as he walked panelists through the design-budget tradeoffs in his spreadsheet. Drawing from students' designs, Eaton and a small group of students used donated materials and construction skills to build a tiny house, delivered just before winter rolled in.