Cleveland Metropolitan School District
The Cleveland Metropolitan School District (CMSD) is the third largest public school system in Ohio, serving more than 35,000 students.
Under The Cleveland Plan, a groundbreaking reform plan created by the community and written into state law, CMSD strives to ensure that every child receives a high-quality education, regardless of the provider. To that end, CMSD lets families choose which District schools their children attend, with options that include STEM, the arts, single-gender education, International Baccalaureate, Montessori and early college.
- Before the pandemic, CMSD achieved gains that outpaced those of districts across Ohio and the nation.
- CMSD is the only district in Ohio under mayoral control. The mayor appoints the nine Board of Education members, who serve without pay.
- The student body is 63.9% percent Black, 17.2% percent Hispanic and 14.5% percent white.
- 13 percent of CMSD students are English Learners. The most common languages other than English are Spanish, Arabic and Swahili.
- To give students a good start, CMSD voluntarily operates 62 preschool sites. Most have received the state’s highest rating of five stars. The others are rated at four stars.
- Our schools serve a city with the nation’s highest rate of child poverty. All students qualify for free breakfast and lunch.
- We maintain more than 90 school buildings. More than half of the buildings have been built or substantially renovated since 2002 with funding provided by the state and local taxpayers.
- The District partners with 16 charter schools that meet its quality standards, sponsoring 8 of those charters. In an arrangement unique in Ohio, charter partners receive a share of CMSD property taxes.
In our pursuit of a more fair, just and good system of education, we want each of our learners, each of our scholars and each of their educators, to be individually and collectively presented with academically/intellectually complex tasks that are worthy of their productive struggle and allow them authentic opportunities to demonstrate their work and their learning of academic content and transferable skills in a joyful and adventurous environment.
CMSD has embarked on a new Vision for Learning that is designed to be more personalized, engage students more deeply and give them more control of their learning. Examples of strategies include hands-on mini-projects that students research and present in demonstrations of learning critiqued by adult volunteers. Or Civics 2.0, in which students organize issues forums, blog and participate in other activities that allow them not to just learn civics but live civics.
The Vision comprises four elements:
- Competency-based Education, which focuses on mastery of standards
- Schools without Walls, flexible use of time, place, technology and talent for anywhere, anytime learning
- Whole Human Learning, incorporating student and educator social, emotional and cultural wellness
- Personalized Learner Pathways, equitable, student-centered career development