Professional Development

Teaching Innovation Motivation Excellence (TIME) are the four tenets TRU SK Consultants, LLC uses to engage all stakeholders around the whole school reform process.  

Improving School Culture Through Innovative Curriculum  and Parent/Community Engagement

  • The TIME model engages students in scripting, filming and producing hip-hop videos that link requisite skills for these activities to state learning and common core standards in reading, writing, math and critical thinking. Through the development of Hip Hop Film Project Based Learning, students are able to use the elements of writing, marketing and budgeting to express their unique perspective on community and world event. In addition, through S.T.E.A.M. projects they learn how to code and create platforms for the content that they produce.
  • The TIME model also serves as a professional development tool for teachers on how to become culturally competent through the development of culturally relevant curriculum. Thus, insuring that the pedagogy is reflective of students’ experience, history and culture.
  • The TIME model presents innovative ways to engage parents in their child’s school through it’s Parent Empowering Students Today (PEST) Program. PEST is a unique parent engagement strategy the focuses on breaking barriers between the school and community. The message is that the school needs the community and the community needs the school. Thus, parents are encouraged to help improve the learning environment in the school and create a parent patrol radius that allows student safe passage to and from school.  The Pest Program is a partnership that exist between local schools, parents, local business, and police department.

TRU SK Consultants, Offer a Range of  Other Services Dedicated to Urban Schools and School Districts:

 Whole School Reform:

  • We assist urban school districts through managing their lowest performing schools and providing improvement planning, training and support.
  • We  develop turnaround plans that leads to positive sustainable school and student outcomes.
  • We do this by providing school district with a three-year redesign plan for their lowest performing schools. This includes improving school culture and developing strong instructional models that focuses on differentiated and data driven instruction.

Leadership Development, Restorative Justice and School Culture:

  • We provide training to schools and district-level leaders on transformational leadership strategies and practices. Our goal is to create innovative leaders that lead from out-side-of the-box. Our leadership training program is designed to produce visionary, inspirational and supportive leaders that help teacher perform at levels that surpasses the teachers’ expectation of their ability to educate the most challenging students.
  • We train school and district-level leaders to critically assess school culture as part of the school improvement process; understanding that unhealthy school culture is a barrier to school reform.
  • We help district level leadership understand the challenges that inner city schools face and equipped them with them with the tools that allow them to be more supportive of local school leaders. This entails recommendations for the re-allocation of funds and differentiating the evaluation formula for new principals who inherit failing schools.
  • We train school administration and staff on Restorative Practices. Thus, we focus on improving student staff relationships; building a school community and culture that reduces suspensions.

 Staff Development: Instructional Strategies, Equity Training, Cultural Responsive Education and Anti Bias Training.

  • We support the development of new (or modifying existing) instructional models using design thinking at the school and district level. Teachers are trained to implement instructional strategies that are aligned with improving student outcomes. Thus, the conversation with teacher is shifted from teacher directed lesson to teacher as facilitator and/or coach. It’s not what teachers have taught, it’s what students have learned. Therefore, data-driven instructional strategies are key part of our professional development for teachers and administrators.
  • In addition, we provide intensive staff development to teacher on how to develop culturally relevant pedagogy, recognize how teacher bias can adversely impact student achievement and create equity in the classroom. Thus, narrowing the opportunity gap for students of color.

Youth Engagement:

  • We train school and district-level staff on Restorative Practices that result in improved teacher/ student relationships, reduced suspensions and healthy school culture. This is about creating a paradigm shifts in the student/ teacher relationship. Students and teacher work collaboratively to develop core values that every member of the school community will govern themselves by. We train teacher and staff how to build strong ‘advisory period’; how to mediate conflicts between student and students and how to mediate conflicts between students and staff.
  • Young Men Initiative: We develop alternatives to suspension programs for inner city schools and districts that focus on supporting and guiding adolescent males. These programs are centered on mentorship, opportunity and exposure. Black and Latino boys continue to be at the bottom of the achievement gap. In addition, the incarceration rates of black men continue to be disproportionately higher than all other ethnic groups. Thus, the social impact of incarceration for communities of colors is devastating. This program had proven results in changing suspension rates and improving the social; emotional and academic achievement for boys of color.

Dr. Shango Blake Speaks on Hip Hop and Youth Engagement