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Community Guidebook

The message to convey to your community is that the high school graduation challenge is a real and significant problem that affects the whole community, but it is solvable with sufficient community foresight and effort. This confidence is based on facts — and lots of them. We know early which students are likely to drop out – in time to intervene and keep them on, or return them to, the graduation path.

We continue to accumulate information about potential and actual dropouts. This information gives us insight into:

One of the most powerful forces in our favor is that students do not want to drop out. They want to graduate. The vast majority of dropouts regret doing so. Many call it the worst decision of their lives. 1

It is now possible to identify students as early as the elementary grades and with considerable certainty by the sixth grade who are most at risk of dropping out of high school — unless they get help. These students are identified by the ABCs of staying on track to graduate: Attendance, Behavior, and Course performance, and in the upper grades, credit accrual. We can address these school-based early warning signs with appropriate support within our schools and communities. We can identify problems early and address them before students become dropout statistics.

Continuing research and analysis of graduation rates indicate that 40 percent of this country’s dropouts come from about 1,400, or 11 percent, of America’s high schools. Known as “dropout factories,” these schools are often in high-poverty neighborhoods- urban and rural- with students who face unusual challenges, both in school and out. In most communities high schools with graduation rates below 70 percent produce the majority of dropouts. Starting your community’s graduation campaign in these low-performing high schools and their feeder middle schools will concentrate your efforts and attack the largest part of the problem.

Tool 3 | State and Community Profile

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The Silent Epidemic 1 report itemizes students’ reasons:

We know from experience and research that many struggling students need constant support to return to, and stay on, the graduation path. This assistance is both academic and non-academic. Students need help to master reading comprehension and mathematics skills at grade level, and to understand why schooling matters to their future so that they are motivated to persevere and learn. They also often need help to overcome obstacles at home, in their neighborhood and community and within themselves to succeed in school. Supporting students to stay in school and graduate requires a multi-pronged approach, including academic extra-help classes. tutoring and mentoring, counseling, medical or mental health care, and other social services that schools are often unable to provide on their own. Sometimes it requires helping students find part-time employment to stay in school.

The Baltimore Ravens’ decision to lower concession prices was a noble one – there’s no doubt about it. The franchise recognized the complaints of its fans, knew it had to cater to them, and did so. They deserve credit for that, and so far, it seems like they’re getting it.

, the primary goal – in reality – was not to make the fans happy. Rather, it was to put fans in seats. The Ravens had a shockingly low attendance at its games in the 2017 season, and the number of fans has been declining over the course of the last five seasons. Despite the monstrous cut in costs, however, I am reluctant to believe that the gesture will prove all that consequential.

The fact of the matter is that Ravens fans had numerous concerns and complaints that led to the drop in attendance to their games. Obviously, the elephant in the room is the players’ decision to kneel, but other issues such as cold weather and the choice between HD television and overpriced tickets to a subpar experience were instrumental to the poor showings. Each of these factors remains prevalent, and for that reason, it is unlikely that lower concession prices will offset them. Decreased prices will be meaningful to regular attendees and season ticket-holders, but they will not drastically affect weekly fan attendance. The most important product to the fans is the one on the field, and therefore, the savviest business decision that the Ravens have made this offseason is 2018 draft selection, Lamar Jackson.

No matter where you stand on Joe Flacco (fan of the Super Bowl winner, or not), it is impossible to deny that Lamar Jackson can simply for the Ravens offense. He is far more exciting and therefore will immediately provide the spark the franchise needed. We have heard so much about how the team needed to play a “more exciting brand of football,” and more than anything else, that reality applied to the business that is the Baltimore Ravens. In a way that Flacco can’t, Jackson creates plays out of virtually nothing, and the potential of that alone will energize the fanbase, surely attracting the numbers the Ravens have been missing in recent years.

While reduced concession prices will benefit the fans whose support has been unwavering, the thoughtful gesture will have a limited impact on overall attendance. To solve that problem, the team needs to excite Baltimore – a feat they were unable to do last season. This year, though, things are different. With the arrival of QB Lamar Jackson, the Ravens have a new product to market on the field, and I believe it will work wonders for filling seats.

by Aidan Griesser

As I am writing this, the Baltimore Orioles are 8-25, 16 games out of first place and 8 games behind Tampa Bay for fourth in the division. The team is playing horrendous ball, unable to match it’s surprisingly decent pitching with even an average lineup. Dan Duquette has assembled a team that looks uninspired, and it is time for the band to be broken up. Luckily, it appears there is no better time (other than last year, of course) to deal superstar Manny Machado.

Machado, who is amongst the MLB leaders in all major categories, is off to an incredible start, batting .354 with 9 home runs and 27 RBI. He is the only Oriole producing quality at-bats; the only Oriole providing hope when he steps to the plate. As a result, he is the first piece that must go. Manny Machado will be the centerpiece of the O’s rebuild, and – as I’ve written about before – if they get it right, dealing him could fast-track their journey back to relevance.

At the Winter Meetings this past December, news broke that the Orioles were actively shopping Machado, seeking two MLB-ready starting pitchers. While they didn’t receive any offers they found enticing enough to strike a deal, their actions suggest that the team – and ownership – are prepared to ship their star shortstop away. In addition, Machado was coming off an up-and-down season that may have hurt his value, especially as he entered a contract-year. However, his steady, MVP-caliber start to the season may have his stock higher than ever, particularly in the eyes of teams who may be one piece away from contending for a World Series title.

One of those teams – one that may be closer than any others, in fact – is the Los Angeles Dodgers. Of course, LA fell to Houston in Game 7 of last year’s World Series, so they were already one of the favorites to take the crown. However, the Dodgers lost shortstop Corey Seager for the season, leaving a massive hole in their lineup and infield. Considering their yearly activity on the trade market (the Dodgers always try to improve their club for the long-haul), it would be no surprise if they held a significant interest in Machado. Manny would provide a short-term fix at shortstop and would give LA the opportunity to entice him to resign in the offseason if they choose to do so. Either way, it is a small commitment for a team whose main goal is to hoist the Commissioner’s Trophy in October.

But do the Dodgers have the prospects to match the Orioles’ needed return for Machado? Surprisingly, the answer is yes. First and foremost, LA would have to include starting pitcher Walker Buehler, who just this past week, combined with the Dodger bullpen for a no-hitter. Buehler has the potential to be a future ace of the staff, and the O’s would surely demand that he be included in the deal. In addition, the Dodgers could offer their #4 overall prospect, RHP Mitchell White, and their 14th-best prospect, 3B Christian Santana, to round out the deal. This would give Baltimore two starters to continue building a rotation around while replacing Machado with a solid defender at the hot corner.

The silver lining of the Orioles’ awful start to the 2018 campaign is that it leaves them with no option but to trade Manny Machado. And while Dan Duquette suggested that they may wait until after Memorial Day, the Orioles appear to have a trade partner that they can start contacting . There is no need for a player of Machado’s caliber on this team, and quite frankly, while Baltimore would miss him dearly, he deserves better. Selling Machado for top-quality prospects would kickstart the Orioles’ rebuild in a big way, allowing them to follow suit with Adam Jones, Mark Trumbo, Brad Brach, and Zach Britton.

by Aidan Griesser

Do you have a very large group? Check out our Group Reservations

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We understand the desire of our guests to have sites that are next to each other when they camp. For two families, we can usually accommodate sites that are very close, if not next to each other. However, due to the sizes and a limited number of sites, we do not guarantee site numbers until check-in. We will do our very best to ensure that you are either next to or very close to others in your group.

Groups of Three:

For groups of three, we have one group camping area that forms a triangle. Two of the sites are Full-Hookup and the third site is Water/Electric. These sites form a triangle and have a fire pit in the middle of the triangle. This area is also secluded from much of the other camp sites which offers added privacy.

Groups of Seven or more:

For groups of seven, Hi-Tide offers the ultimate camping experience. We have 7 campsites that form a circle that is within steps of The Lake @ Hi-Tide. Each site is Water/Electric and has a picnic table. There is a very large charcoal grill for use by Circle campers and a large fire pit in the middle.

What time does The Lake @ Hi-Tide close for campers?

The Lake @ Hi-Tide is open for campers from 9am to dusk each day.

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All guests at Hi-Tide must pay the daily rate. The only exception is that children 2 and under are free.

Are there residents at your place that leave their trailer year round?

Yes, we have seasonal sites. For members that have seasonal sites, they do leave their campers on their lots all year round. However, use of the campground is only available April through October.

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Unfortunately, due to ground conditions and access to the campground in the winter, Hi-Tide limits the dates that campers can remove the camper from the campground. These dates vary each year depending on weather conditions.

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What is the deposit required for campsites?
If you camp is the charges for the lake and pool included or is everything separate?

For campers, The Lake @ Hi-Tide and all of the water toys are free to use. To prevent overcrowding and to maintain a clean pool, there is a $1 charge per person per day to use the pool.

Do you offer a discount for orders of large amounts of fire wood?

We offer a Fire Wood Crate for $100. The crate must be ordered ahead of time and will be delivered to your site shortly after check-in.

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Raising awareness of Galapagos in the UK

/ Symbiotic relationships in Galapagos

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GCT Supporter Cruise: May 2018

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Guest blog: How to travel responsibly in the Galapagos Islands

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July 18, 2017

The natural world is full of creatures that rely on each other for survival, as well as an easier life. The food chain is the most basic example; without the single cell organisms at the bottom of the food chain, the apex predators could not exist and vice versa. Nowhere else are symbiotic relationships more evident than in Galapagos. Across the Archipelago, animals are spotted clinging on to one another to share heat, feeding on other species to gain a more varied diet and seen cleaning their neighbours from parasites.


The symbiotic relationship known as commensalism benefits the first participant, and causes no harm to the second participant. A good example of a communalistic relationship in Galapagos is between the Galapagos dove and the Opuntia cactus. The dove burrows into the cactus to nest and rest, using the plant as shelter. The cactus, however, is not affected positively nor negatively from the dove residing within its pads.

Galapagos Dove © Judi Miller


Mutualism is a description of a relationship between two animals found very commonly in the natural world. Mutualism is a relationship where both organisms benefit from each other, such as the Galapagos giant tortoise and the Galapagos finches as well as some mockingbirds. The bird flies in front of the tortoise to show that they are present. The tortoise then stretches out its neck and legs so that the bird can reach ticks and other parasites often found on the skin of the tortoise. This means that the Galapagos giant tortoise is relieved of parasites and the bird achieves an easy meal, with them both benefitting from the exchange.

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