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Da Vinci RISE at APCH

In 2017, A Place Called Home and Da Vinci Schools partnered to open RISE High at APCH, an innovative charter high school designed around the unique needs of youth navigating foster care, housing instability, the juvenile justice system and/or other circumstances that have caused disruptions in their academic journeys. APCH was RISE High’s first co-location partner, and welcomes all RISE students as members who have access to APCH’s after-school arts, education, and wellness programming, as well as wraparound counseling and case management support.

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The Da Vinci RISE High model was designed to provide an equitable education for students traditionally left out of the larger educational narrative. RISE believes that if we build with the needs of the most at-promise youth in mind, we will not only create an empowering school for them, but we will create a school that is well equipped to serve students with a vast array of skillsets and needs. RISE leverages project-based learning, flexible scheduling, college and career exposure and mastery-based grading to provide equity of both outcome and experience to empower youth to meet their goals and live happy – independent lives.

RISE schools are co-located within community-based social service providers that assist with wraparound services and extracurriculars that build student confidence and empowerment. A Place Called Home Richstone Family Center New Earth

RISE High Pillars

Graduation Pathways
RISE schools have three graduation pathways available that align to California regulations. Each pathway has slightly different credit requirements and end goals to align with students’ postsecondary plans (e.g., eligibility to attend state colleges and universities and preparation for community college or the workforce). Da Vinci RISE Graduation Pathways

Flexible Schedules
School counselors collaborate with students and their parents/guardians to design a schedule that meets both their academic and personal needs. Students are required to attend class in person twice each week, although they are encouraged to attend as much as possible on scheduled school days.

Blended Learning
The flexible schedule at RISE schools is made possible through the use of blended learning. Students digitally access coursework through Google Classroom and Canvas to prepare for in-person instruction and project work time.

Project-based Learning
Teachers use interdisciplinary projects to connect students’ learning to their interests, passions, and strengths. These projects allow students to demonstrate their progress toward mastering universal competencies that focus on process over product (e.g., analysis, problem-solving, and argumentation). Students present their learning at an annual school-wide exhibition each spring.

Mastery- and Competency-based Instruction
Students are evaluated based on the knowledge and skills they demonstrate rather than time in class or work completion. They are given multiple opportunities to revise and strengthen their work after receiving feedback from their teacher. This system allows students to work at their own pace as they earn credits toward graduation.

Career Readiness
Students engage in a variety of activities to expose them to postsecondary options and prepare them for life after graduation, including a mandatory World of Work course to learn how to create a resume, apply for a job, and interview; field experiences at local workplaces; and project-based learning aligned to actual careers.

Student Centered Learning

Students are at the center of the RISE model; all aspects of the school experience adapt and respond to individuals’ needs and goals as they evolve, making it possible for students to succeed academically while caring for their mental, physical, and social-emotional needs. To that end, the student experience involves instructional, behavioral, and holistic components. Da Vinci RISE Vision


Individualized learning plans rely on flexible scheduling, blended learning, mastery- and competency-based instruction, and real-world projects to make school relevant and feasible.


Trauma-informed, restorative practices like community and advisory circles create a positive and inclusive environment that amplifies student voice and helps create trusting relationships among students and staff.


An in-house wraparound program helps students access and coordinate social service supports both inside and outside of school.

In-house Wraparound Services
Each RISE school has a team of mental health professionals including a school psychologist, a counselor, case managers, behavior interventionists, and a Coordinator of Student Support Services who serves on the leadership team and oversees the mental health practitioners. This team provides a wide range of resources, including but not limited to: mental health counseling, postsecondary planning support, case management, help navigating housing instability or the foster system, access to clothing and hygiene supplies, and connections to community organizations that provide meals, medical and dental care, and support for pregnant and parenting teens. The integration of these services within the fabric of RISE schools ensures that students never have to travel far to get what they need to be ready to learn.

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