Case Studies

Connected learning at High tech high charter schools

High Tech High (HTH) operates 12 charter schools in San Diego and Chula Vista counties, including three elementary schools, four middle schools, and five high schools. The first charter school was founded in 1998 to address the skills gap in science, technology, engineering, and math.

HTH schools bring together students, teachers, administrators, and parents through practical hands-on training and experiential learning, coupled with traditional academic education to prepare students for college in both technical fields and the liberal arts. Each student is paired with a faculty advisor who regularly interacts with them, monitors their academic progress, and facilitates career planning. To maximize connectivity, HTH employs PowerSchool, a web-based portal that allows teachers to record attendance and grades while providing parents and students with access to real-time learning and performance information, a channel for communication with teachers, and the ability to track assignments. Administrators use PowerSchool to deal with structural constraints such as room capacity, teacher preparation periods, and student scheduling priority.

HTH’s connected learning initiatives showed positive results in student performance. HTH students have completed more than 1,000 experiential learning projects in over 300 organizations, including Qualcomm and Fox News. Of HTH’s high school graduates, 98 percent attended college, of which 30 percent entered science or math fields.

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