Approximately 40 students are held at JJIC and attend school on a daily basis. Nearly all of the students who pass through JJIC have experienced school failure—many did not attend school regularly and were suspended or expelled. Most are far behind their peers academically, and 30 to 40 percent of them have special education needs. At Travis Hill, we believe it is our moral imperative not only to meet the academic needs of these students, but also to reach out to them, show them we care, and help them find a path forward by tapping into their hopes, dreams, skills, and talents.
The Travis Hill School is student-centered, with an intensive focus on making school relevant and meaningful, creating a culture of high achievement, and developing a school climate rooted in mutual respect and understanding.
The curriculum is organized around short, thematic units (examples of themes include change, identity, justice, power, choice), each of which runs for approximately twenty instructional days. This approach enables students to actively participate in school even if they are detained at JJIC for only a short period of time.
Our school culture and climate is grounded in a set of values (Respect, Integrity, Good Judgement, Hope/Optimism, and Teamwork) and a positive approach to discipline and prosocial behavior.
We utilize blended learning and technology to enable our students to access content beyond the walls of our small school, to increase their technology and computing skills, and prepare them for success at school or work upon release.
We also support our students beyond the walls of our school through the Travis Hill Rises program. Upon students' return to the community, we offer support to allow for a successful transition home and begin the work of reducing the recidivism rate.
We work closely with the custodial care staff at JJIC, actively engage with the families of our students and invite them to be active participants in the life of the school, and partner with members of the greater New Orleans community—building relationships that will support students when they return home.