Gem Prep: Meridian administration thoroughly researched various blended learning models, as well as visiting several successful blended schools, before finalizing a model that would be powerful enough to allow us to personalize learning for every student. The rotation model functions well and is adaptable enough to efficiently afford educators personal, small group time with students each day while simultaneously giving students access to adaptable instructional software which advances with their own skills and ability levels.
One challenge has been the recruitment of quality teachers, paraprofessionals and support staff. Caused by a national decline in available qualified teachers and geographic considerations, Gem Prep: Meridian has a limited candidate pool. Implementing and then executing the blended model requires teachers with excellent classroom management skills and organization, as well as being technologically savvy and innovative in their thinking. To bolster acquisition of quality talent, we encourage schools to cast a wide net using a variety of advertising tools such as: social media, recruitment fairs, and especially, personal connections.
Our leadership team found that detailed planning, almost to the point of minutia, has been key to program implementation, growth and continued forward momentum. Networking with other blended educators, purposefully reading and researching and then staying focused every day on delivering quality to all stakeholders is key. Don't let ambition and speed deter you from purposed, well-planned, methodical growth.
GEM Prep: Meridian is a Blended Learning School that is part of Gem Innovation Schools, a charter management organization that also manages the Idaho Distance Education Academy (I-DEA), Gem Prep: Nampa, and Gem Prep: Pocatello.
Gem Prep: Meridian blends powerful online programs with high-performing, in-person teachers to individualize students' learning. Teachers use real-time data from classwork, formative assessments, and online programs to adapt instruction, group students, and ensure that every student is engaging in work at an appropriate level.(gemprep.org/meridian)
Contact: Nanette Lehman
Contact Title: Principal
Gem Prep: Meridian
2750 E. Gala Street