Stateside
4:55 pm
Mon November 4, 2013

Macomb County high school see success in 'flipped classroom' education strategy

There is a high school in Macomb County that has grabbed the attention of educators across the country.

Three years ago, Clintondale High School became the very first in the country to be a "flipped school."

Kids watch teachers' lectures at home as much as they want or need, and class time is when teachers are there to help with what we would otherwise call "homework."

One education expert says maybe online is controversial, but the flipped classroom is a new strategy nearly everyone agrees on. It can be a very good thing for students and teachers.

“The idea evolved over time,” said Greg Green, the principal of Clintondale High School. “Students wanted to use technology within the school and within the classrooms. And then also we need to have a more supportive environment, because even though parents are really well intended . . . we know that parents can’t support that learning process fully at home.”

Through screen capture technology, teachers can record their voice and place it over PowerPoints or summarize lessons in short videos. Students can watch these videos while at home, and the next day in the classroom they do their work with the teacher there to help.

“We’ve seen increased graduation rates, increased college enrollment rates. We’ve seen increases in standardized testing,” Green said. “Everybody seems to feel that this is a better model for us, it’s more supportive for our students.”

Since implementing the flipped classroom, the failure rate in the school has dropped from 30-35% to 8-9%.

And, kids who do not have access to the Internet at home are able to use school computers before and after class to watch the videos. Green even allows students to use the computer in his office. The videos are also available on mobile devices.

“I think most schools struggle with how do we best support our students. How do I blend technology and how do we keep teachers centrally focused in the classroom?” Green said. “We see the value of online, but we also see the value of the person, and so this is a way to get the value of both of those.”

- Michelle Nelson, Michigan Radio Newsroom

Listen to the full interview above.