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This spring, NYC Outward Bound Schools is sharing its approach to deeper learning through two site seminars at network schools.

On Tuesday, May 21, Brooklyn Collaborative Studies (BCS) opened its doors to NYC educators to share the vision, systems and structures needed to create an “all-in” culture for performance-based assessments, which NYC Outward Bound Schools has supported through instructional coaching for years. Schools that belong to the NY Performance Standards Consortium offer students Performance-Based Assessment Tasks (PBATs) in lieu of some Regents tests. PBATs consist of researching, analysis, writing, revising and presenting on a subject to a panel of educators and/or outside evaluators, similar to defending a thesis in college.

While PBATs are no doubt intensive, there is flexibility within the structure. Through classroom visits, a panel discussion and gallery walks, BCS leaders and educators explained how creating various entry points and levels of rigor can support and challenge all students. Educators also have the freedom to take risks to support student inquiry and push them to challenge their own assumptions and become better problem-solvers, they affirmed.

“Attendees were blown away by the students and how clearly they articulated how their learning has been impacted by PBATs and Round Tables,” said Janique Cambridge, Instructional and Leadership Coach at NYC Outward Bound Schools. “This method of instruction really encourages student agency, leadership and engagement in the learning process, creating spaces of joy where students can love learning.”

“I left feeling invigorated hearing all of the ways you’ve championed, pushed and supported student inquiry,” added Robert, an attendee. “I’m hoping that I can continue to advocate for the Outward Bound/PBAT mindset within my school community. It feels so clear as an educator pushing for culturally responsive content, and spending endless time building out a curriculum, to do so within a coordinated team committed to these values every day.”

There’s one more opportunity to attend a deeper learning site seminar for FREE:

Friday, June 7, 2024  |  9am – 2pm

Spend a day exploring expeditionary planning and instruction through the lens of student presentations of learning. See exemplary models of authentic student work that are connected to real world issues. This workshop is run in partnership with West End Secondary School, a NYC Outward Bound school.


West End Secondary School
227-243 W. 61st St., New York, NY 10023

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