Educational model developed by "Team Grasmick" wins Daily Record Innovator of the Year award

The award recognizes “Team Grasmick’s” work to develop and implement The LYNX School at Frederick High in Frederick County, Maryland.

By Megan Bradshaw on September 4, 2017

The new high school model that Towson University Presidential Scholar Nancy Grasmick and her team have worked on for the past two years has been chosen as a 2017 Innovator of the Year award by The Daily Record.

The award recognizes “Team Grasmick’s” work to develop and implement The LYNX School at Frederick High in Frederick County, Maryland.  The school will open for its first cohort of students on September 5.

“The Linking Youth to New eXperiences (LYNX) School is founded on four principles: advocacy, flexible schedules, partnerships and innovative learning,” said Grasmick.It is ground-breaking because, unlike other models that serve small populations of students, or are ‘theme-focused,’ LYNX takes a comprehensive public high school of over 1200 students and creates a learning environment where EVERY student, with the help of trained educators and business advocates, develops a personal plan for success based on that student’s unique talents and interests."

The LYNX School defines success as every student graduating ready to take credit bearing courses in college, or on a career path that will lead to living wage employment. 

The LYNX School serves a majority minority student population.  Twenty-nine percent of the student population identifies as Hispanic, 27 percent as African American, 30 percent as White, eight percent as Asian, and six percent as multi-racial. Forty-five percent of the students receive free or reduced price meals.

School will be open from 7 a.m.–8 p.m. (6:30 p.m. in Year One), allowing students more flexibility to better accommodate family and employment obligations; take more classes per semester to accelerate their graduation and entry into college or the workforce; take better advantage of job shadowing, internships and apprenticeships for career discovery and growth; access cutting-edge on-line courses and enrichment opportunities through extended learning labs and have access to instructional assistance for students needing more individualized help.

LYNX measures student performance by mastery of competencies rather than by “seat-time” and an examination. Every student graduate will have met all Maryland requirements for a high school diploma, but not necessarily on the traditional timeline.

The 900-member Frederick County Chamber of Commerce has partnered with the school to provide each student with a career-fostering opportunity through job shadowing, an internship, and/or an apprenticeship. Students can use these opportunities to hone their career goals and acquire knowledge and skills that lead to graduation, and then on to college or career.