Mother Of Mercy High School
Mother of Mercy High School provides integrated academic and social/emotional supports to our students through a four tier model. This model allows us to best meet the needs of each student by providing them with the level of support and intervention that is appropriate for them. Tier one focuses on offering quality researched based instructional practices for all of our students as well as a supportive and nurturing educational environment. Tier Two focuses on providing a number of supports to help students who are facing a variety of every day life challenges such as struggling in a specific class, attendance issues, health concerns, or the loss of a family member. Tier Three provides specialized instruction for students who have basic reading, writing, or math skill deficits that could adversely affect their progress in the curriculum and Tier Four focuses on providing services and accommodations for students with disabilities. Students who need a higher level of support such as Tier three or four also have access to the supports provided at the lower levels.
Focus is on School Wide Strategies for All Students. It includes the core curriculum and researched based instructional practices.
• Course Levels -
Mercy offers courses at various degrees of difficulty which include: Advanced Placement, Advanced, Honors, College Prep 2, and College Prep. 1. We dedicate a great deal of time and energy working to place students in courses that will provided them with pace of instruction and content level that is optimal for them.
• Block Schedule -
Mercy utilizes a "Block Schedule" with alternating days of four 85 minute classes to allow for extended class time for additional critical thinking skill development, activity-oriented learning, and technology integration, while maintaining challenging and comprehensive curricular offerings.
• Freshman Focus -
Freshman have the opportunity to meet with senior team members who serve as positive role models and good listeners. They seek to increase the self –confidence and self-esteem of the freshman as they make the transition to the high school environment. Freshman Focus leaders are skilled in the difficult task of helping others solve their own problems, rather than solving problems for them. Activities include small group discussions, large group presentations, opportunities for individual reflection and a full day retreat.
Involves more specific supports for a selected group of students who are having minor or short term academic, heath, or social/emotional difficulties.
• Guidance Staff -
Mercy has three full time guidance counselors and a part time school psychologist on staff. In addition to other duties, they offer consultation with parents, teachers, and private agencies (i.e. clinical psychologists, physicians, tutors), provide brief short term counseling for students, and help with referrals to outside agencies.
• School Nurse -
A registered nurse is on duty at Mercy three days each week to handle any illnesses or injuries.
• Student Assistance Program -
a problem solving team composed of the guidance counselors, school psychologist, and assistant principal. The purpose of the Student Assistance Program (SAP) is to provide identified students with the skills, knowledge, and support necessary to succeed throughout their four years of high school. The program utilizes a holistic approach of education, social support, and self-awareness to increase a student’s academic success and overall social/emotional well-being. They identify and provide assistance to students who are academically at risk, have a history of excessive tardiness and/or absences, have an accumulation of conduct points and/or detentions, are experiencing situational stress, and/or students in need of outside intervention.
• Peer Tutoring -
Students at Mercy volunteer to serve as peer tutors for other students who are in need of tutoring in specific subject areas. Tutoring is available to any student who requests it. Students can also be referred for tutoring by their teachers.
• Study Skills Course -
“Set For High School Success” is a week long optional enrichment course offered during the summer before the students’ freshman year. The class is designed to provide the students with critical skills that will help them to be successful throughout their educational careers. Topics include: effective study skills, determining individual learning styles, short and long term goal setting, communication skills and working effectively in groups, and exploring interests and careers. The course is taught by one of Mercy’s guidance counselors.
Focus is on providing support for students whose math or reading skills are one or two years below grade level.
• Math and Reading Support -
Mercy has a full time intervention specialist who dedicates a portion of her schedule to provide reading support and a half time math specialist. Both of these support staff provide students with individual or small group instruction to strengthen basic skills as well as support them in the general curriculum. Students meet regularly, usually every other day for 45 minutes with the intervention specialist and/or math specialist during their study hall. The specialists are also available to consult with classroom teachers regarding their students’ needs within the general curriculum.
Learning Services Program
Focus in on providing specific services for students who have been identified as having disabilities or having English as a Second Language (ESL).
• Inclusion -
Mercy has always practiced full inclusion for students with disabilities. Students with disabilities are able to enroll in any level course that is appropriate for their academic skill level and the educational requirements are the same as those for the student body in general. When possible test accommodations are provided within the classroom setting and support services are provided during study halls.
• Intervention Specialist -
Mercy has a full time intervention specialist who provides individual and small group instruction for students who have been identified as having a disability through their local school district. Students usually meet with the intervention specialist every other day for 45 minutes during their study hall. Services are provided in a resources room that contains several computers, books on tape, videos and other resources. An Individualized Service Plan is written for each student that identifies the student’s individual needs and goals for that school year and the services that will be provided for them.
• Accommodations -
Mother of Mercy Accommodation Plans are also written for students with disabilities or ESL students that allow them to have accommodations within the classroom depending on their individual needs. The types of accommodations that are offered at Mercy include extended time on tests, oral reading of tests, tests given in a small group setting and preferential seating. Mother of Mercy also utilizes assistive technology software and devices to support reading and written language needs.
• School Psychologist -
Mercy has a part time school psychologist on staff. The school psychologist provides case management services to help set up and monitor the services and accommodations that students with disabilities will receive, make sure that procedures are in order for the students to receive accommodations on the Ohio Graduation Test and College Entrance Exams if they are eligible, and to help with the transition to receive support in college. In addition, the school psychologist conducts psycho-educational evaluations required to assess progress as well as maintain services at Mercy and receive accommodations on standardized tests and in college. The assessments are conducted at school during study halls so that there is no loss of instruction. The school psychologist also consults with teachers, parents, and counselors to help problem solve ways to best support an individual student.