Crew is the structure we adopted at U Prep Schools that allows scholars to build positive community with one another, as well as school staff. It supports students socially, emotionally, and academically. Crew is part of school culture. It builds on our strong belief in Restorative Practices, and is used as one of our proactive strategies to create safe and restorative spaces, as well as fun with academics for the entire school community. Crew addresses topics including Positive Community/Team Building, Bullying Awareness/Prevention, Academic/Personal Goal Setting, and Mindfulness & Meditation. It emphasizes Self-Control, Collaboration, Hard work, Optimism, Leadership, Achievement, and Respect. As students experience these topics and learn about these habits, it contributes to a positive school culture. Our scholars engage in class crew, grade-level crew, and all-school crew.

Crew offers an opportunity for character development, team building, academic and personal goal-setting, celebrations, competitions, and student showcases.

U Prep scholars in grades K-8 are taught Common Core State Standards in English Language Arts. It is a comprehensive, standards-based literacy program that engages teachers and students through compelling, real-world content. This past year we have taken a critical look at what texts are being included in the lessons, whose voices and perspectives were missing, and have made strides toward transforming curriculum to match our Culturally Responsive vision. English Language Arts focuses on using evidence from texts to write, and engage in text-based discussions that promote the development of 21st Century skills.

After early research in 2013, U Prep Schools became the first school network in the City of Detroit to adopt EL and Crew in the 2014-15 school year. Students experience EL in grades K-8 in their English and Language Arts classes. Crew meets daily in all grades for approximately 30 minutes. We are Crew!

Here’s how Crew helps build community and fosters relationships.

“I love how Crew embodies community. It allows for my scholars and I to connect, first thing in the morning, through enlightenment and enjoyment!”

~Erica Starks, 5th Grade Teacher – Crew Leader UPA Mark Murray

“What I love about Crew is that it is a chance to bond with our scholars on a deeper level. I like that in Crew we can help scholars to develop socio-emotional skills, talk about current events, play games, and that students have a chance to just enjoy being around each other without the pressure of academics.”

~ Rebecca Wyatt – UPSM MS – Science Teacher – Crew Leader

“I love morning crew because it helps me to learn more. Sometimes I learn ways to help me not be frustrated. For example, today I watched a video that taught me to write down three things that I am grateful for, this is a good way to stay calm during the day.”

~ Naila, 5th Grade Scholar, UPA Mark Murray

“I like Crew because it is a place where we can come together to talk about anything that is going on in our life, in school or outside of it. Crew makes me feel like I am part of another family.”

~ Breana, 12th Grade Scholar, UPA High School