International Education and Community Initiatives, dba One Bright Ray, Incorporated (OBR), is a non-profit community based organization founded in 1980. We collaborate with school districts in urban area in their re-engagement and preventative efforts of high school dropouts. We serve over 690 students and provide them with a second opportunity to obtain their high school diploma through an accelerated high school experience. Our instruction is personalized, individualized and allows for additional learning time. We support our students by creating a safe learning environment for achievement. We hold parents, students, faculty and staff accountable for their actions and outputs. We emotionally and financially support our students with social workers, a school therapist, a nurse and daycare services. We support our students by adding additional teachers in the classroom, after school tutoring, summer programs, internships, and exposure to culture and arts. We provide hope, hold our students to higher levels of expectations than ever before and encourage our students to achieve.
OBR schools are accelerated learning programs. Students complete the program in 2.5 years or less, depending on the amount of credits they have upon entering the program. There are four modules in the traditional school year (September to June) and students can earn up to 2.5 credits per module. Students are also required to complete a summer session each year they are here, earning 1.75 credits per summer course. Summer sessions include internship opportunities; Work Ready programs where students can also earn a salary by developing a community-based program, or a summer workshop to further hone academic skills.
Project Based Instruction
Project Based Learning is based on the ideology that people learn best when they are active participants in the learning process. Through inquiry-based instructional methods and hands-on, tactile experiences in the classroom, students take ownership of their own learning and facilitate their own academic growth by experimentation, questioning, construction, research, technology and skill building. Project Based Learning allows each student to connect with the material in their own way, devise a way to express their comprehension of the material and find the potential to extend meaning into the real world.
We believe that attention to the whole student is necessary and that the emotional well-being of a student is directly related to his or her learning abilities. In-house social workers, school therapists, nurses, deans and daycare facilities support our schools. They are highly structured and we believe that attention to the small details is key to supporting our students. Each school partners with community-based organizations to ensure support services are being provided at the school for all students.