Match Next: Next Generation Middle School?
This case is set in 2015 as a team at Match Education, a high performing charter middle school in Boston, explores new staffing and technology approaches in their quest to obtain what they term "jaw dropping" results. The team hopes to test and model for other schools solutions to specific educational problems. In 2013, the team began to think about the redesign to create a school model in which students spend significantly more time reading, more individualized attention is provided to students and families, the challenge of finding outstanding teachers is addressed, and to do so in a cost-effective manner. In their redesigned school, Match Next, students receive all of their instruction from inexperienced newly minted college graduates called tutors, who are supervised by one master teacher, called a Director of Curriculum of Instruction (DCI). In addition, the Match Next team infuses technology into instruction (e.g. students watch instructional videos and complete online activities) and operations (e.g. schools keeps track of student assessment results and select activities and problem sets from online databases). After the first year as a full-day program, results on the state test were very strong in math but below expectations in ELA (English Language Arts). The case explores questions related to designing the school model, interpreting early results, and assessing the team's ability to disseminate their model to other schools.