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Beers tapped as principal of Campus International

BY TRAVIS BARKER

JUNE 21, 2010

Julie Beers, principal of Campus International, was not looking for a change when opportunity knocked.“As sad as it was to leave my current position, I really believe this is an opportunity for tremendous growth for me,” said Beers. She was very happy and content with her job as principal, but the opportunities she sees as once in a lifetime, such as hand selecting the staff and creating the curriculum, were enough to persuade her.

Although this is her first involvement with a school that falls under the new and innovative category, Beers feels confident that her work transforming Noble Elementary will help her with the new challenges she will face at Campus International.

“The school had a lot of discipline problems when I got there so we developed a culture where the students wanted to come to school every day,” she said. “All of our work really geared around preparing our students to be efficient readers, and of course they would feel safe in their environment.”

“It is now a very happy place; very few discipline problems, and all about academics,” she continued.

Beers plans on bringing successful practices from Noble Elementary to Campus International.

“Any school needs to have common expectations where all the students know the rules, so one of the things I’d like to do is work with the staff to find out what they are doing currently,” Beers said. “Then we can determine what that would look like at the new school.”

The partnership with CSU is something that really encourages Beers.
“You really have the freedom at this school to research best practice techniques and implement them, which is unique at this school,” said Beers.

Best practice techniques are ways of instruction that the children respond to better than others. Those will be discussed and the best ones will be used consistently by all the teachers.

“The goal of the school is not just to educate the 120 students that are at the school, but to be that model school that other Cleveland schools can come and ask ‘what are you doing that is working,’” she said.

The partnership between the school and the College of Education has gotten much attention, but other schools at CSU want in on the laboratory school, according to Beers.

The school of psychology will be administering a test to measure the student’s reading growth, which is normally issued by paid psychologists in regular schools. The anthropology department has also expressed interest in working with the school.
Campus International is looking to partner with the community gardens to help teach kids about healthy eating and growing their own snacks.

“We really wanted to not be just a college of education school, because when you think of an elementary school you automatically think of college of education, but look how many colleges can be involved and benefit the school,” said Beers.