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We all desire the success of future generations. With respect to all my relations, we have some challenges to meet. Preparing our future generations to create a better future for themselves is our goal. In our current educational format, we assess the student, align his or her needs with appropriate instruction, evaluate the process and determine the student’s achievement. We have a growing population where this model is only partially effective. We know now, through our own professional development, that a wrap around model such as this student achievement model must include a holistic approach that incorporates a behavioral and emotional component. A culture that is void of rites of passage begins to produce deviant behavior void of emotional connection and personal responsibility. If we use this model to critique our current efforts with the disenfranchised youth, we will find that we are failing them miserably, or so the statistics indicate with a 27% recidivism within the first 12 months of initial incarceration. We would like to present a powerful solution that addresses several areas of concern with these youth, maximizes the funding currently allocated to existing programs, and offers a sustainability component unmatched in any current program.
We are honored to be invited to be part of the development of a resource group for at-risk youth, and the potential affects we can have on youth in general.
We’re hear as part of this process and to introduce to you an evolutionary new concept called Spectrum Academy.
Changing the concept of at-risk to at-hope youth is our challenge today. How can anyone know what is outside their little worlds when they don’t know anything else exists? As concerned educators, parents, and grandparents, we would like to offer some alternatives that bring people, places and things together in new ways, using existing successful individual programs. We believe we have discovered a way that makes logical sense… and potential dollars, too, using current best practices of business and management philosophy. We’
What is the best way to address our at-hope youth population that creates a win/win for everyone?
Community technology centers were originally designed (and federally funded) to lessen the digital divide in our communities. Designed to deliver free or low-cost access to computer and computer related technology.
Attendance at the White House-sponsored meetings recently revealed only $13 million available nationwide for start up funding, and all monies have to have matching funds. There is a problem here. The digital divide is getting bigger, not smaller. We’ll show you how this can change.
Residential Treatment centers have gone from $700/client/day (1985) funding to less than $200 per day for youth programs today. The Arizona Wrap-Around model being introduced to bring the child-family team concept engages necessary elements. Current treatment methods are like taking a fish out of a dirty fish tank, cleaning them off, and throwing them back into the same tank with hopes of survival and success.
Charter schools are great incentives for educational reform, yet necessary funding is quite difficult to get without the capacity to raise funds like district schools. Federal funding is available, yet potential grant writers are usually stuck in the classrooms because of fiscal budget crunches.
Let’s look a little deeper at yet another problem that we need to address.
These are statistics from the Arizona Department of Juvenile Corrections and the Child Defense Fund
Recidivism is high… 27% of youths return within the first year.
Only 46% of Arizona youths detained by police last year were enrolled in school. 88% of these youth were ages 14 -17… approx. 6,000 – over 3300 not enrolled in school
55,898 juveniles were referred to ADJC in 2002
Arizona ranks 49th among states in percent of uninsured children.
Arizona spends 3.7 times more per prisoner than per public school pupil.
Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community is reported to have a near 80% drop out rate from K-12 programs. Treatment funding alone has decreased from around $700/client/day (approx. 1985) to around $200/client/day now. As our society progresses we’ve found new freedom. We’ve also found bondage beyond belief.
Addressing this growing problem without addressing the core issues is only a band-aid treatment and we can already see that it isn’t working. Our current system is overwhelmed with the magnitude and severity. The White House Faith-Based and Community Initiative recent meetings in downtown Phoenix were a result of the acknowledgement that even the Feds need help and are willing to offer some financial support for it, too. No child left behind is a great gesture… we need to take more responsibility and not expect others to do it for us.
Establishing relationships with the Arizona Department of Juvenile Corrections, Department of Economic Security-Child Services Division, Behavioral Health Service Providers, and existing district schools are critical to serving this population.
Where are the kids now?
Out of school… on the streets…. In your house? … destroying neighborhoods… seems they are menace to society at present, or at least a menace to themselves in their maturation toward adulthood. It affects our community because they are doing the same thing that delinquent young men have done for millennia… causing trouble through theft, vandalism, terrorizing neighborhoods. This is what is happening to our kids and our community.
This is doesn’t even address what they are doing to themselves. It perpetuates from child of an abusive or absent parent, who becomes parent - has child… over and over. Cultural wounds only drive it deeper.
Analogies: Pollution, International aggression, what is America about… we take care of problems through proactive involvement… that is who we are, that is what we do… We come together to help one another. That is America. Healing a Nation comes through collaboration and trust that it can be done!
The East Valley Needs Assessment was performed by the Cities of Chandler, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, and Tempe, using nearly  50 focus groups over a six-month period. Within the top three concerns of each community were at-risk youth and family services. The cities concerns were how to maximize funding with the continual budget cuts in Federal and State programs and services.
Spectrum provides the environment to fulfill the wrap-around model for services, from education to treatment, providing a holistic program for youth to grow. Spectrum brings 3 resources for funding/revenue to one location, maximizing funds for better coverage and dollar/pupil resources. Arizona currently spends 2.7 times more money per prisoner than per student. Federal and State budget cuts can be overcome (somewhat) through additional funding, grants, and opportunities through various foundations and public support. The key sustainability feature comes with the community data/technology center and its fee for service and subscription-based electronic services.
Holistic education is concerned with the growth of every person's intellectual, emotional, social, physical, artistic, creative and spiritual potentials. We are unique as a leader in the research, design, and implementation of holistic education using state-of-the-art technologies. Our collaborative alliances and partnerships with industry leaders bridge at-risk 21st Century learners with 21st Century technology and our emerging global culture.
This is our service objective
We believe our first responsibility is to prepare the students to meet the challenges of the rapidly changing world around them. A holistic strategy in a peer-based community atmosphere facilitates students to perceive and understand the various contexts that shape and give meaning to life.
A peer-community is a community based on shared support, giving and receiving help founded on key principles of respect, shared responsibility, and mutual agreement of what is helpful.
The secret to a successful endeavor of this type is the sustainability factor. Even with all the grant monies that are available on State and Federal levels, they want to know what the exit strategy is…. How is the sustainability going to work out.
Community planning includes job preparation, skills development, and employment throughout the operations of Spectrum Academy, from concept to completion, including administration, construction, facility operations, educators, staff, and residential mentors. The plan includes the development of cottage industries that help to continue the economic development of te community. Self confidence and a sense of pride in the community evolve in the process. The Circle of Life, the Four Directions, the Labyrinth, and the Medicine Wheel are all design elements in the site plan. Traditional dwellings inclusive of the array of types and styles will be included as a sharing of inter-tribal culture in honor of each, contributing to the bridging of diverse Nations as an example to all people. Each dwelling will be adapted for size and capacity of occupants. Youth will learn their construction and help with construction during expansion.
Intense research and study have helped us to see a way out of this dilemma. Spectrum Academy is just one of the opportunities that address holistic education inclusion in developing new schools. Removing children from harmful environments, such as the current juvenile justice system does, is only a temporary adjustment or Band-Aid to the problem. It is like taking a fish out of a dirty fish tank, wiping it off, and throwing it back in with expectations of survival. The fish tank just needs cleaning. How do we do that? We believe Spectrum Academy is the answer. It is possible to integrate residential treatment centers, charter schools, community technology centers, and peer community concepts to work synchronistically. We can adapt what we know about peer mediation and alternative dispute resolution to empower choice and decision models that inspire our youth to live responsibly. Spectrum Academy is built on transformational leadership, creating a vision and leading everyone toward its fruition. How much would you like to offer toward this process? Will you help to develop Spectrum Academy? $100,000 gives us the opportunity to garner the management team to fill the current gaps and begin work on the exploded plan, putting all the pieces together to fulfill the vision.
Nothing new…. The SEED Foundation in Washington, D.C. has developed a live-in program that is working.
Applying expertise of successful programs… learning from pioneers and progressive programs
The SEED School currently serves 310 students in grades seven through twelve. Students are picked through an annual lottery
SEED's academic program offers a skills-focused, standards-based curriculum for the first two years, followed by a college-preparatory curriculum the remaining four years. The construction of the campus was completed in three phases in order both to meet the growing needs of the student body and to minimize the upfront financial investment.
Generous capital campaign contributions from individuals and foundations
Construction financing through Bank of America's largest loan ever to a non-profit charter school
Pro bono services and in-kind donations of furniture and equipment from businesses and schools
Passionate dedication and skilled work by design, construction and inspection professionals
Enthusiasm, design input and support from staff, students, parents and neighbors
Technology-based … PopRead concept that Jimmy McNichol was attempting to introduce in CA.
Popular media – Games, Movies, TV shows, Videos… etc. that are already engaging the youth… are broken down into the academic elements, holistic views, and curriculum diversity.
Holistic Education….
is concerned with the growth of every person's intellectual, emotional, social, physical, artistic, creative and spiritual potentials. It actively engages students in the teaching/learning process and encourages personal and collective responsibility. is a quest for understanding and meaning. Its aim is to nurture healthy, whole, curious persons who can learn whatever they need to know in any new context. By introducing students to a holistic view of the planet, life on Earth, and the emerging world community, holistic strategies enable students to perceive and understand the various contexts, which shape and give meaning to life. recognizes the innate potential of EVERY student for intelligent, creative, systemic thinking. This includes so-called "students-at-risk", most of whom have severe difficulties learning within a mechanistic reductionistic paradigm, which emphasizes linear, sequential processes. recognizes that all knowledge is created within a cultural context and that the "facts" are seldom more than shared points of view. It encourages the transfer of learning across separate academic disciplines. Holistic education encourages learners to critically approach the cultural, moral and political contexts of their lives. values spiritual literacy (in a non-sectarian sense). Spirituality is a state of connectedness to all life, honoring diversity in unity. It is an experience of being, belonging and caring. It is sensitivity and compassion, joy and hope. It is the harmony between the inner life and the outer life. It is the sense of wonder and reverence for the mysteries of the universe and a feeling of the purposefulness of life. It is moving towards the highest aspirations of the human spirit.  
NO sustained learning takes place until youth are emotionally available – a healthy environment is critical.
Trained staff from local community is house-mentor to 6-8 residents housed in adapted traditional dwellings.
Dialogue creates bridges for changing patterns. Communication is the key to unlocking new choices and healing wounds of the past so the future can unfold unimpeded.
Spectrum Academy is a model peer-community that helps youth find restored hope and success in their lives. A peer-community is a community based on shared support, giving and receiving help founded on key principles of respect, shared responsibility, and mutual agreement of what is helpful.
13 moon residential cycle includes achievement of goals and objectives for the student, celebrated by the community, and movement into the next moon. A full cycle qualifies the student for peer-leadership position within the community and residence.
Community members available to mentor students and their parents to assist habilitation and success in the choice to change undesirable patterns.
Families are critical to healing the community. They will be participants in on-going counseling and problem-solving training. In extreme cases with in-residence programs available so the whole family is served. Temporary employment can be arranged as part of the cost offsets while in residence, with assistance in business or job development as part of the treatment program.
Again…. Utilizing those who have gone before us
Here is where programs like Tony’s Media Concepts are integral to the process
MIT Media Lab - The two primary goals are to create at least one new "out of the box" pilot for an innovative learning environment, and to form a local group of "learning activists" to develop, guide, research and help others appropriate successful models.
School of Psychology and Education at the University of Geneva – tecfa unit… addressing ed. technology use
“We are convinced by the effectiveness of socio-constructivist pedagogies in education and struck by the apparent lack of widely deployed supporting tools.”
CTC Data Center provides Web-based delivery services for:
E-curriculum –off-site programs available on a subscription basis
Distance Learning – entire curriculum packages for home schooling and more – Red Oak Academy
Adult Ed – students who have reached certain goals will be teaching adults about technology
Web-based services – ISP service, web hosting, data storage, small business development
The e-commerce trend is producing new opportunities daily, so our technology-driven business unit – the data/technology center – is poised to capitalize on this trend, providing data storage to e-commerce to web radio and web TV. Through skillful strategic planning, Spectrum Academy’s electronic gateway will attract an escalating number of clients and customers who recognize the value of the service and the community.
Covers the needs for 100 students for the first year to increase to 150 for year two.
Teachers, support staff, administrators and facility
Start-up administration costs and first year’s budget
State certification process 90 to 120 days – 6 month timeframe
Hardware/software engineering, facility build-out, and staff
Projected returns fund charter and RTC by year 3, ROI by year 5
Here are the reasons to get involved:
With your help, Spectrum Academy’s unique program can offer youths structure to find success in new experiences and provide valuable work opportunities, reflecting increased personal value and self-esteem. We all know that education needs to address the growing emotional and intellectual needs of our children- the connectedness of mind, body, and spirit to the world around them. We have unveiled the embryo of an integrated master plan that could solve our educational and behavioral difficulties... unifying youth with adults and building mutual respect and support. Spectrum Academy offers solutions that will change the patterns of problems today by offering habilitating healthy habits for tomorrow.
You will be part of impacting the lives of many through facilitating:
Youth Preparedness for Life/Work - Success stories, however great or small Higher Functional Employees - Systems thinking is revolutionizing industry from the top down already Choice of Continuing Education - College opportunities might not have been available otherwise. Capable Citizenry for Change - When you lend a hand to someone, they can lend a hand to others Higher Participation in Community - Graduates learn to contribute back to their community Return on Investments in the CTC – Data business unit will provide operational budget requirements
How would you like to become a part of our collaborative team?
Your questions are welcome. Please contact DreamTeam@spectrumacademy.org Do you know of anyone that would like to be part of the development or funding of Spectrum Academy? We will need grant writers to help with the start up phase. Do you know any that would support our work? If you like what you’ve seen, please share it with other people of purpose or supportive natures.
We are looking for change agents, people with purpose and direction that align with Spectrum Academy’s mission and vision. We will be a working board and members will need to know and operate in a philosophy of Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience, as expressed by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi. It is the state of being where you are totally connected to the needs of the moment and freely give yourself to them because it simply gets results and feels great. Being in Flow is related to patient and persistent presence, creating a joyous anticipation of the next challenge, knowing success is imminent. We need that kind of attitude to facilitate change in destructive patterns of youthful ignorance.
To apply, simply tell us who you are, why you would like to be a part of Spectrum. Of course potentially a virtual board functioning in-tandem with physical board would explore new models of management in greater detail. Congruent with our philosophy of holistic systems, this would also add input and resources.