King/Drew Magnet High School of Medicine and Science
PROGRAM DESCRIPTION/FIDELITY GUIDELINES
This Magnet began in 1982 as a result of a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation for curriculum development. A group of community activists, concerned parents, physicians and administrators from Charles R. Drew University and King/Drew Medical Center spearheaded the concept of King/Drew Magnet High School. Their goal was to address the under-representation of minorities in the health care professions. Charles R. Drew University, King/Drew Medical Center (also affiliated with UCLA) and the Los Angeles Unified School District’s Office of Integration collaborated to develop a plan to build a school that would provide students of the Watts community with hands-on experience in careers in the health care professions. The late Los Angeles Supervisor, Kenneth Hahn, set aside a 3.8-acre property located across the street from the Augustus Hawkins Mental Health Facility of the King/Drew Medical Center and adjacent to Charles R. Drew University of Medicine for the express purpose of building the school envisioned by the Watts community.
King/Drew Magnet High School began as a medical magnet high school to meet the needs of the under-represented young people with an interest in medicine and science. The hospital program, one of the first in the District, was the focus of the magnet program. Students were encouraged through exposure to the numerous clinical units and research labs at Charles R. Drew University and the King/Drew Medical Center to pursue a career in medicine or science and then return to serve their communities. With a population of 220 students in grades 10-12, King/Drew students were assigned to a clinical/research site five hours a day, one day a week. The program thrived and additional sites were established at CSU, Los Angeles, CSU, Dominguez Hills and UCLA, as well as community out-patient clinics. As the school grew academically, adding honors and AP classes, so did its reputation for achievement in scientific research. When NASA accepted the research project of one of our students, King/Drew’s reputation soared to a new level. The hard work of the staff and mentors paid off. The school gained a reputation as an excellent high school with high academic standards. King/Drew was achieving the goals set by the founding members from the community.
As enrollment in the school increased, criteria were developed for students wishing to enter the hospital program. Students now must have at least a 2.5 G.P.A. in math and science classes and an overall G.P.A. of 3.0 in their 9th and 10th grade classes. Presently, 240 King/Drew students are assigned to over ninety site locations throughout the Los Angeles area. The Medicine and Science Careers program, formerly the hospital program, is currently serving 11th and 12th grade students.
With a full staff and a near maximum capacity of students in the school, the Careers program is firmly in place, serving students who are sincerely interested in medicine and science. Ninth and tenth grade students are introduced to medicine and science through a series of field trips to national and local medical conferences and institutions, speakers from all areas of medicine, and for the past three years, a partnership with UNITE LA through the Intersegmental Faculty Articulation Grant in Contextual Learning based at California State University, Hayward.
Annually, fifty to seventy-five (50-75) students attend a symposium presented by the Association of Minority Health Professions Schools (AMHPS). The primary goal of the program is to cultivate a new generation of scholars, thereby improving the representation of people of
color in the Biomedical Sciences and Health Professions. In order to be considered for the symposium, interested students must write an essay discussing their interest in medicine and must be recommended by teachers. Students attending the symposium are given an all expense paid trip. Abstracts of their scientific research projects are presented in a national competition for college scholarships.
II. EDUCATIONAL PHILOSOPHY
Our purpose is to promote scholarly habits of mind that lead to our students becoming life-long learners who communicate effectively, think critically, and envision themselves as active participants in a humane society. We believe that every student can and will learn; therefore it is required that all students follow a college preparatory, honors, and advancement placement path in our four year program.
The Medicine and Science Careers Program of King/Drew has been the centerpiece of our school’s curriculum since its establishment. Our program provides a unique opportunity for students to access experience-based learning in environments including hospitals, clinics, research laboratories, and university facilities. Additionally, students actively develop connections with experts and professionals throughout the community, both locally and globally. As students pursue the Medicine and Science Careers Program at King/Drew, we emphasize the development of scientific inquiry, critical thinking, effective communication, and technological expertise.
Recognizing the shortage of health care professionals in underserved communities with large populations of people of color, our students commit to returning to their communities to invest their talents and skills.
III. DIFFERENTIATED OBJECTIVES
The goal of King/Drew is to offer a diverse curriculum in the fields of math and science beyond the basic Los Angeles Unified School District requirements. In addition to the science courses that are part of the District’s science curriculum King/Drew offers several specialized courses developed specifically for this program. All students are expected to fulfill the University of California’s A through G requirements in addition to the following King/Drew requirements:
Advanced Placement (AP) Course Offerings
Students who wish to challenge themselves by enrolling in classes designed to meet college requirements, who have appraised themselves of King/Drew’s faculty expectations for the class, may take any of the following beginning their tenth grade year:
Students with special needs, i.e. GATE, RSP, ELD, and Target-Assisted Title I are clustered in regular classes and served by teaching assistants, use of special materials and other support as appropriate.
IV. EXPECTATIONS OF STUDENT PERFORMANCE
Students at King/Drew benefit from a program that emphasizes mathematics, science, and literacy. In an effort to maintain a high academic standard, students are expected to follow certain policies and guidelines. Students are expected to:
In order to maintain a "C" average or better students have the opportunity to participate in the following tutorial and enrichment programs:
Voluntary College Support Programs
V. MULTICULTURAL ACTIVITIES/CURRICULUM
We recognize the dignity and worth of every human being no matter their sexual orientation, ethnicity, religion, gender, or culture. At King/Drew we find it imperative that students learn to recognize and appreciate the "content of a person’s character,"i as well as the content of the curriculum. Towards that end, we have begun professional development in culturally responsive teaching. In addition, to create harmony and understanding among our mostly African-American and Latino population, we pursue activities and opportunities for students to learn about themselves and our diverse cultures. Moreover, many teachers have made multicultural education an integral and seamless part of their curriculum. As enrichment, students of all ethnicities, including African American, Asian, Latino, Middle Eastern, Native American, and others enjoy collaborating in celebrating during the following events:
VI. SPECIAL CURRICULUM
Curriculum and training are designed to expose eleventh and twelfth grade students to careers in Medicine and Science. The focus is to give each student the academic foundation to qualify and compete in post secondary institutions.
To gain experience, students choose sites according to their own interests and/or availability. They spend seven to nine weeks on site, meeting from morning time until lunch, one day a week: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday. Students who select research sites may remain for an entire school year, or rotate to as many as four sites a year.
The program goals are to:
Plans for the future include: increasing the number of sites, developing more partnerships, and reorganizing the program to allow all students to begin their participation in their freshman year. In addition, we will provide staff development to assist teachers in creating thematic units to support our specialty, medicine and science.
VII. SPECIAL ENRICHMENT ACTIVITIES
King/Drew students are fortunate to have a plethora of activities that support and enrich our academic program.
VIII. PARENT AND COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT
We believe strongly that the education of our students depends on the partnership between parents, community, and school. Parents volunteer on campus, donate money and materials, and are involved in a number of ways, including:
Parent Advisory Committee (PAC) meets monthly to inform parents and address current issues and concerns; The Parent Center, a facility for hosting meetings and volunteer activities; and Coffee with the Principal, an open meeting for parents and community members.
Back to School night, College Night, Information Day, Open House, Freshman orientation - widely attended meetings where parents, their children, and other community members engage in dialogue with faculty and staff and receive pertinent information.
Our students benefit from the services of the following community agencies: King/Drew Medical Center, Charles R. Drew University, Southwest Community College, UCLA, USC, Loyola Marymount University, Watts Labor Community Action Committee (WLCAC), Watts Healthcare Foundation, Kaiser Learning Center, and many others. In addition to interacting with various organizations and agencies, we take special pride in maintaining a working relationship with some of the community members who were instrumental in founding King/Drew.
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