Zombies are expected to attend one of many projects exhibited at New Urban High School’s Presentation of Learning and community dinner Wednesday evening.

by: PHOTO BY: MARTIN WINCH - New Urban High School freshman Austin Brown portrays a zombie with makeup by Kat Synder.To prepare, freshmen have been learning math to determine when the zombies will arrive, getting help from the Centers for Disease Control to plan for a disaster, making healthy eating and physical fitness plans, studying the history of past disasters, writing stories and drawing plans. All members of the community are welcome to attend the exhibition from 5 to 6:30 p.m. Nov. 20, at New Urban, 1901 S.E. Oak Grove Blvd.

“While the zombie invasion is headed our way, with careful planning, our students are ready for the invasion,” said Martin Winch, a member of the seven-member interdisciplinary team of teachers. “And even if the zombies don’t show, the students will be a little wiser and a lot healthier. They’ll be ready for any disaster — big or small — that life throws at them.”

While the state passed legislation in July to require schools to adopt a proficiency-based grading system, New Urban started using that system last year. Getting a $1,000 boost from a Wells Fargo grant this month, students attend short skill classes in the middle of each school day in between two block classes to apply those skills to projects.

Last year, New Urban faced a proposed closure of its building, and instead absorbed both the Oak Grove Center and the Twilight Program, which offers GED and computer-based diploma completion programs. Two instructors were hired for the Oak Grove Center, and Winch moved up from a less than half-time position to a nearly full-time position teaching writing skills classes and helping with the freshmen project class and the Twilight Program.

With two new principals hired by the district, New Urban also started C.A.F.E, a noncredit after-school program that includes a cooking class.

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