New Tech Network Names Katherine Smith Elementary School as National Demonstration Site

September 6, 2016

Katherine R. Smith Elementary Pricipal Aaron BregardKatherine Smith is cited as exemplary school in the New Tech Network

Napa, CA New Tech Network (NTN) announced today that Katherine Smith School was selected as a National Demonstration Site in the New Tech Network (NTN). Katherine Smith School(K. Smith School) has demonstrated successful implementation of the New Tech school model so that students gain the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in life, college and the careers of tomorrow.

“We applaud the significant work necessary for schools to meet the demonstration site criteria.  We consider them exemplary schools within the New Tech Network of nearly 200 schools. Through the school’s hard work, students are better prepared for life and college, they have also developed a deep love of learning,” said NTN President and CEO, Lydia Dobyns.

To receive this prestigious distinction, K. Smith School demonstrated many notable accomplishments. The school had to develop a clear set of student learning outcomes consistent with skills required to succeed in college, career or civic life. These include content mastery tied to state standards as well as work ethic/collaboration, critical thinking and oral and written communication. All courses demonstrated rigorous and relevant Project-Based Learning (PBL) to amplify deeper learning while engaging students in the classroom. The deep integration and use of technology is present in all classrooms. Finally, a school culture that establishes students at the center, built on trust, respect, and responsibility must be evident throughout the school.

The school, located in San Jose, CA is now in its fifth year and is dedicated to getting students to think, learn, work, communicate, collaborate and contribute now and throughout their lives. Principal Aaron Brengard detailed the steps his school has taken to achieve NTN Demonstration site status.

“We opened in 2012 and re-imagined teaching and learning.  We wanted to truly prepare students for this ever changing world.  We want them to have the skills and habits to open every door for college and career success.” said Brengard.

Demonstration site schools play a key role in showcasing the New Tech model in action by opening their campus to other communities. K. Smith School will host tours for national, state and local schools and districts to experience a New Tech school firsthand. Visitors will take part in student-led tours to learn about the fundamentals of the school, including project-based learning examples, integrated use of technology and the culture shift that is integral to every New Tech. Last year, NTN schools hosted thousands of visitors wishing across the country. In addition to tours, demonstration sites play an important role in hosting New Tech training events. These trainings often provide an authentic immersion experience for teachers and administrators as new districts and communities prepare to open and teach in their own schools.

New Tech Network recently released its 2016 Outcomes Report showing strong success among four key findings.

New Tech Network Students:

● Graduate from high school at a rate 9% greater than the national average.

● New Tech students grow 61% more in higher order thinking skills between freshman and senior years than comparison group.

● Attend college at 70%

● Persist in college in 4-year colleges at a rate of 92% and in 2-year colleges at a rate 72% over the past five years

“We know that kids who are able to think critically and flexibly, communicate effectively, and work well with others while also knowing how to advocate for themselves are going to succeed in college and career at much greater rates than those who can’t. Our partnership with New Tech Network is helping us grow a college and career ready future for our preK-grade 8 students,” said Kathy Gomez, Evergreen Superintendent.

With a growing network, a proven model, and a demand for more district-level support, NTN is a catalyst for rapid innovation, improvement, and scale. Public school districts are now turning to NTN to support the spread of innovative practices across multiple schools at all grade levels.

# # #

Katherine Smith School is a pre-K to 6-grade public, neighborhood elementary on the east side of San Jose, California. K. Smith School is part of the Evergreen School District and has been nationally recognized for its 21st-century learning approach.

For a full list of New Tech schools, visit our website at:

About New Tech Network

New Tech Network, a national non-profit organization, is a leading design partner for comprehensive school change. We work closely with districts and schools to create innovative learning environments. Through a proven school model, a project-based learning platform, and powerful professional development, we coach schools toward lasting change and ongoing improvement.

There are nearly 200 schools in 28 states and Australia in the New Tech Network.


Tags: , ,