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Sleepy Hollow High School Receives 'School Of Opportunity' Designation

Photo Credit: Contributed

SLEEPY HOLLOW, N.Y. -- Sleepy Hollow High School is among 17 high schools in New York and Colorado to receive the "School of Opportunity" designation from The National Education Policy Center.

The 17 schools chosen “demonstrated a range of practices that ensured that all students had rich opportunities to succeed. All put students, not test scores, first.”

The Schools of Opportunity project, paid for by the Ford Foundation and the NEA Foundation, highlights excellent practices designed to expand student opportunity and access to academic success. The program was piloted in the two states during the 2014-2015 school year. Next school year, the project will include high schools nationwide.

Tarrytown Superintendent of Schools Christopher Clouet credited Sleepy Hollow High School Principal Carol Conklin-Spillane for her work to make the high school, and all its course offerings, accessible to all students.

"This is a wonderful tribute to the visionary thinking of one of New York's best principals,” Clouet said. “Not everyone originally was in tune with the wisdom of Sleepy Hollow’s 'open enrollment' approach, but she stuck to her core values. The world is catching up."

Sleepy Hollow High School and two other Westchester County schools, Fox Lane in Bedford and Harrison High School, were among 12 schools named Silver Schools of Opportunity.

Specific practices include effective student and faculty support systems, outreach to the community, health and psychological support, judicious and fair discipline policies, little or no tracking and high-quality teacher induction and mentoring programs.

School applications were required to go through four levels of screening, including rubric-based ratings by two evaluators. Evaluation teams also made in-person visits to recognized “gold” schools.

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