New Beginnings Academy
It is the goal of the New Beginnings Academy (NBA) to establish a creative and caring environment for students to successfully learn in a school setting. The fundamental philosophy of the NBA program is that each student is a unique individual with unique personal, social, behavioral and educational needs. As a result, every disciplinary situation becomes unique in nature. Consequences for misbehavior provide the best learning value when matched to the unique student and unique situation. The likelihood for children learning from their mistakes increases dramatically when children see a reasonable connection between their behavior and the resulting consequences.
The NBA staff dedicates itself to following a set of core beliefs that provides a guide for dealing with student discipline. These core beliefs guide our attempts to individualize disciplinary procedures and to help students perceive reasonable connections between their behavior and the resulting consequences.
The core beliefs provide the guiding light for our professional decisions. The staff encourages parents and students to bring concerns and questions to us in the event that we operate in a manner that appears to be inconsistent with the core beliefs.
Criteria for Placement
The program will focus on students in grades six through eight who have violated the WESD Student Code of Conduct agreement at their home school. Students referred to New Beginnings Academy have been recommended for long-term suspension or expulsion.
Students who are receiving special education services may be considered for referral to New Beginnings Academy, provided the IEP Team is in agreement with the placement. Students in the program who are evaluated and found to be eligible for special education services may continue in the program as deemed appropriate by the IEP Team.
Faculty and Staff
The New Beginnings Academy will provide a challenging core curriculum for all students. Our program provides services for students in sixth through eighth grades. Our staff of certified teachers is committed to empowering students with the tools necessary to achieve academic success. Our faculty and staff have access to state-of-the-art educational and technology resources, low teacher-student ratios, ongoing professional development and the freedom to focus on relationships and helping children learn.
In addition to the academic aspect of WESD, we go one step further and focus on assisting students to become successful in social situations, avoid power struggles, and model healthy, appropriate adult behavior.
Four full-time teachers and three full-time paraprofessionals assist the teachers in the NBA classrooms. A full-time school administrator provides support to implement program goals.
The following list of core beliefs outlines the professional actions and attitudes of all staff.
- Every attempt will be made to maintain the dignity and self-respect of both the student and teacher.
- Students will be guided and expected to solve their problems without creating problems for anyone else.
- Students will be given opportunities to make decisions and live with the consequences.
- Misbehavior will be viewed as an opportunity for individual problem-solving and preparation for the real world as opposed to a personal attack on school or staff.
- Students will be encouraged to request a “due process hearing” whenever consequences appear to be unfair.
- School problems will be handled by school personnel. Criminal activity will be referred to the proper authorities.
Key components of the program are core academic curriculum, behavioral intervention, social skills, and conflict resolution with reentry into the general education setting after a specific time period. Students participate in NBA for a minimum of one quarter before they are considered for transition back to their home school.
Benefits of the key components of the program include:
- Core curriculum aligned with the Arizona state standards
- Full-time school administrator
- Low student-teacher ratio
- Positive social skill development training in communication, conflict resolution, problem solving and anger management
- Standards-based learning activities
New Beginnings Academy is located at 1502 W. Mountain View, Phoenix, AZ 85021. The program operates from the hours of 8:50 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., except on Wednesday Early Release days when students are released at 2:30 p.m. New Beginnings Academy follows the WESD school calendar and observes all half-day and professional development days. Once on campus, students will remain under the direct supervision of NBA staff at all times. At no time will student(s) be left unattended.