The High School for Medical Professions is a student-centered culture that supports the high expectations we have for our students in academics and in the other aspects of their lives. HSMP serves as a microcosm for students as they explore issues of medicine. The following are some examples of the core routines and rituals that support and celebrate the individual while developing the school as an inviting, rigorous and supportive community:
HSMP offers a daily advisory session that meets as a regular and required class every year. Students and teachers travel through advisory together throughout all four years, making the advisory group a smaller community within the small community of our school for students. Advisory ensures that every student is known as a student and as an individual. The advisor is the school's liaison to the student's family and the student's most strident advocate. That advocacy takes the form of telling other teachers when the student is having a problem, keeping track of their graduation and college readiness and providing a safe space for their charges.
To accomplish this, each staff member, including teachers, administrators and support staff, leads or assists as an advisor and is responsible for no more than 25 students. Advisory may be a student's most important experience at HSMP. From freshman year until graduation, students meet in small groups that become second families.
The physical space of the school is warm and inviting, meeting students' needs for safety, comfort, and community. Students are expected to maintain and improve upon the space, and are supported in their efforts to do so. Walls are covered with text-rich student work, notices about upcoming school and community events, and a current issues bulletin board. The culture of HSMP helps to make sure that students engage with the physical space with respect and a deep sense of ownership. Students, along with the staff, are responsible for designing the school space, and incorporating exhibits and artwork that reflect their interests, concerns and talents.
Getting Ready for College
Every student at HSMP starts getting ready for college on the first day of school. Throughout all four years of high school, advisory supports students on this journey. During advisory class, students develop skills of time management, decision-making, and goal-setting. They take trips to colleges throughout the city, state and country so that they can make an informed decision about where they want to matriculate after graduation from HSMP. Also, they get help with SAT preparation, as well as college and scholarship applications and essays.