High School Redesign

High school student excited to be in class, giving the thumbs up will sitting at his desk.

About Holyoke High School Redesign

The Holyoke Public Schools is transforming the high school experience to ensure that every student has a high-quality educational option, with a focus on college and careers for all students.  Our innovative High School Redesign Plan includes strategies for improving the instruction and services offered, and providing students with the skills and tools they need to be successful in school now, and later in college and their careers.  The high school redesign structure empowers students as self-directed learners ready for 21st-century workplace and college rigor.  The plan, developed by nearly 100 educators, students, community members and national experts, including support from the Barr Foundation, is organized around an academy structure designed to provide “personalized learning pathways” for all students.


Students at Holyoke High School receive an in-depth, well-rounded MassCore aligned high school education that prepares them for college, career, and community leadership.  In addition, our redesign plan provides students with exposure to a wide array of college and career opportunities in the area of their emerging interests and community-based learning opportunities. Internships, job shadows, and experiences in the field offer valuable opportunities for our students to learn about potential career pathways and explore their interests while receiving the essential foundations for academic success.


Our strategic plan includes a series of thematic academies that provides opportunities for students to develop a personalized learning path toward college, career or both. Built upon choice, and access to advanced educational opportunities, the plan deepens student engagement and provides families and business and civic leaders explicit opportunities to partner with educators to help guide students’ career and college plans, as well as strengthen our local economy. Importantly, our academy structure  prepares our students for the global economy and a society that demands more critical thinking and higher levels of educational achievement. It is a structure that gives our students a competitive advantage, ensuring they graduate with stack-able credentials sought after by employers and colleges and universities alike.

Visit the Holyoke High School webpage for more information.

Additional High School Redesign Resources


High School Redesign Academy Leads:

Performing and Media Arts Academy

Bevan Brunelle


Community and Global Studies Academy

Elianna Shwayder


Engineering and Life Science Academy  

Mary Brazeau


Turnaround Menu

Improved Graduation and Dropout Rates

The Holyoke Public School district (HPS) has made major gains in graduation and dropout rates (the highest since the MCAS was introduced as a graduation requirement).  Holyoke’s 2017-18 graduation rate is 72%, an increase of 20% in comparison to results from five years ago.  The district’s dropout rate is 4.9%, reflecting a 23% decrease for the same time period. Learn more by reading our press release.

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