Learning at CMCCS


A child’s early years are the foundation for his or her future development, providing a strong base for lifelong learning and learning abilities, including cognitive and social development.

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Kindergarten - 2nd Grade

Cardinal McCloskey Community Charter School’s kindergarten, first, and second grade students are exposed to instructional practices that support the development and early learning with a framework aligned to the Sanctuary Model of trauma-informed learning to maintain a nonviolent, democratic, productive school community and a curriculum aligned to the Next Generation Learning Standards. Our staff has the availability of a multitude of online and classroom curricular resources that continuously support the development of children with an overview of language and literacy, mathematics, science, and social-emotional development. The educational practices, including technology, support the early learning of second language learners, and students at risk for disabilities and receive instruction during small group intervention. The principles of learning include managing the learning environment, teaching subject-matter content through learning trajectories, tiered intervention approaches, using a mix of instructional methods, interdisciplinary approaches to instruction, and ensuring follow-through and continuity.

3rd Grade - 5th Grade

Students in grades 3-5 participate in a well balanced educational program. Cardinal McCloskey Community Charter School takes a methodical approach to instruction in every subject area in order to provide frequent and significant opportunities for growth. Evidence-based structures such as interactive read-alouds, strategy, guided groups, and accountable independent reading are used across the curriculum. Student data is used to create individualized learning plans and real-life experiences. We use a balanced literacy approach within English Language Arts. Vocabulary activities, interactive read-alouds, close reads, shared, guided, strategic independent reading are all part of the daily routine. During writing, the focus is on craft, grammar and mechanics. Teachers implement units that provide students with a variety of genres and mentor text in order to promote authentic writing experiences for students. In order to give our students a solid Science foundation, we follow a sensory approach to science literacy. Our students are engaged in hands-on, project-based learning experiences. The National Geographic Panorama reading through the lens of Social Studies exposes learners to Civics, History, Geography, and Economics, through authentic living books.


Core Subjects


Reading, Writing, Spelling

Early reading ignites creativity, sparks curiosity, and stimulates the imagination in young children. Often, this leads to role-play as children grow which helps to develop other skills such as empathy, problem-solving, and morality.


Math helps children develop mathematical thinking. A child’s math involvement from kindergarten often predicts later academic achievement even better than early reading or attention skills.


Science is the process of learning about the natural world through observation and experimentation. Scientists use evidence, along with active thinking, to explain what is happening in the natural world.


History is the study of the past. The study of history helps make sense of humankind. It also helps people understand the things that happen today and that may happen in the future.


Music is a group of sounds that people have arranged in a pleasing or meaningful way. All cultures of the world make some form of music. Music can be simple—for example, one person tapping out a beat on a log drum or singing a children’s song.


Art helps children learn and practice skills like patterning and cause and effect (i.e., “If I push very hard with a crayon the color is darker.”). They can also practice critical thinking skills by making a mental plan or picture of what they intend to create and following through on their plan.

After School Programs

After school programs support social, emotional, cognitive, and academic development, reduce risky behaviors, promote physical health, and provide a safe and supportive environment for children and youth. Our after school programs run until 6:00pm every school day.

Our Approach

We focus our outreach and student recruitment efforts to enroll at-risk students in the community—i.e. students who are in foster care and who are receiving preventive services.

Cardinal McCloskey Community Charter School addresses the needs of these students by providing a rigorous academic program in a trauma-sensitive environment that gives students comprehensive wrap-around services and support. Students in foster care or preventive services in CSD 10 are in more need of effective academic programs and supportive services than students who are not in foster care or receiving preventive services.

Beyond the Books

A trauma-informed Sanctuary approach to educational and supportive programming that cultivates a trauma sensitive environment in which at-risk youth can maximize their potential to learn, heal and grow.