Big Ideas Competition

Diplomas Now Announces Winner of Big Ideas Competition

Diplomas Now is pleased to announce the winners of the first Big Ideas mini-grants competition among its school sites who were full of creative ideas to boost students’ ABCs – attendance, behavior, and course performance.

  • At Boston’s Dever-McCormack K-8, the entire school community will gather to praise students who have improved their ABCs. Each month, teachers will nominate students who have shown great success or improvement in each of the ABCs. The students will be honored at an assembly and rewarded with water bottles, bracelets, trophies, t-shirts, certificates, and other prizes. One lucky student will win the top prize – the Panther Pride Award – for exemplifying the school core values: “Work hard, work together, Panther Pride.”
  • Students at Los Angeles’ Hollenbeck Middle School with perfect attendance during each five-week grading period will be rewarded with an invitation to Tasty Treat Thursdays. On the first Thursday after each grading period, students who came to school every day of the last five weeks will get to help themselves to churros or ice cream. Student leaders will rally their peers to come to school every day so everyone gets to join the fun.
  • The DN team is involving families in students’ success at John Liechty Middle School in Los Angeles. Mentors will work with students who have displayed troublesome early warning indicators to guide the students back on track. At the end of each grading period, the parents of these students will be invited to a tea with the mentors, as well as teachers and administrators. Parents will learn about efforts to increase the ABCs at Liechty and will spend one-on-one time with their child’s mentor.
  • Washington D.C.’s Spingarn High School will host A Night at the Food Museum to teach students and families about the benefits of healthy eating. The DN team will transform the school into a food museum and offer a guided tour about healthy living. Students, parents, and community members will become food connoisseurs as they taste a variety of healthy foods and will leave the event armed with a bag of produce and recipes to make their next meal a healthy one. Spingarn’s DN team will feature other healthy living events throughout the year. As students develop more healthy lifestyles, they will have increased attendance, positive behavior, attentiveness, and participation in class.
  • Teachers and administrators at Los Angeles’ Clinton Middle School will hand out golden feathers to students who show respectful behavior during the day. And the feathers are worth their weight in gold – students can use them like cash at the school store or as a golden ticket to special events during lunch time.  Monthly school events will celebrate the students who have showed the most improvement, as nominated by their teachers, and parents will be invited to two Saturday celebrations during the year.
  • Students at D.C.’s Browne K-8 will make sure they have excellent ABCs so they can attend the school’s carnival. To get an invite, students can’t miss more than three days of school or receive more than three behavioral referrals during the third term of the school year. Students also have to achieve a C or higher in both English and math. Browne’s DN team will personalize the carnival to the students – asking them what activities they most want – so that all students will be eager to attend. Teachers and administrators will make school-wide announcements about the carnival and the requirements to get an invitation and will hold lunch rallies about the importance of the ABCs.