Please summarize the proposal to reorganize the Accelerated and Enriched Instruction (AEI) office and explain how it will meet the needs of students and programs.
Dr. Jack R. Smith, Superintendent of Schools, has made identifying and serving the needs of our highly able learners a priority and used the Metis Report as a catalyst for creating an expansive vision of access to enriched and accelerated instruction. This vision is based on MCPS’ commitment to expanding access to enriched and accelerated instruction for students.
Although there are reductions in AEI central office staffing, an AEI Unit will remain with a supervisor, instructional specialists, and data management coordinator positions. In addition, the AEI coordinator position, which works with International Baccalaureate and Advanced Placement programs, is reorganized to the Department of Secondary Curriculum and Districtwide Programs in order to better integrate work with the academic and career readiness content area supervisors. As a part of the creation of instructional specialist teams in the Office of School Support and Improvement (OSSI), one AEI specialist position is reorganized to OSSI.
MCPS values the work of staff in the Division of AEI and the school system will continue to support the continued expansion of services for our highly able learners. However, it is clear that one group of educators is not sufficient to meet the needs of all highly able learners in the system. It is imperative that every educator take responsibility for meeting the needs of our highly able students. One of the goals of the choice team is to strengthen the ability of all schools to meet the needs of highly able students. This school-level support is most critical for students and there has been a great deal of effort put into building the local schools’ capacity.
The work of AEI will continue in a more integrated system where advocates for enriched and accelerated instruction will be embedded with others in the curriculum and program office, putting them at the table when decisions are made about curriculum, instruction, and programs. By creating a space where diverse perspectives come together to meet the needs of all students, we believe that the needs of the highly able learners, and indeed all learners, will be well served.