Da’ok Academy

Da’ok Academy

Executive Summary


Formerly known as the Alternative Education Program since 2011 and established as a high school in 2017, Da’ok Academy provides an alternative learning setting for students not succeeding in the general high school setting by meeting their educational needs.  Da’ok Academy aims to guide and support at-risk students of grades 9 through 12 in their behavioral, academic, social, and emotional foundational skills so that they are career and college-ready for life.  The structure of the school serves as an intervention to help students remain on track toward graduation. The academy believes in an individualized learning approach and tailors an education plan specific to each child.  Further, a strong school culture and robust support system are integral to the academy’s mission. 

Vision - Da’ok Academy will become a highly supportive alternative school that prepares students to be lifelong learners and effective contributors to the community. 

Mission - Da’ok Academy aims to develop the behavioral, academic, social, and emotional (BASE) skills of all its students. 

Core Values 
Be Safe.  
Be Respectful.
Be Responsible. 
Be Truthful.

In collaboration with the Division of Youth Services and the Department of Public Safety, Da’ok Academy also services adjudicated youth who are incarcerated at the Department of Corrections correctional facility. 

The enrollment process to Da’ok Academy is supported by referrals from the main high school principal along with the student's counselor.  To build consistency in intervention and support, referrals are long-term.  As an alternative education high school, a small student-to-teacher ratio is integral to meeting the individual needs of each student while providing the needed structure and support to ensure that every student is successful. Since SY2022-23, we have 5 subject content teachers and 1 CTE Teacher. Our teachers teach 4 or more subjects to meet the 28-credit course offerings required for high school graduation.

The school is now located at the Kobler Pods (in front of Koblerville Elementary School since August 2001. After sustaining substantial damage from Super Typhoon Yutu in October 2018, Da’ok Academy relocated to the Northern Marianas Technical Institute (NMTI, Tanapag) campus in Lower Base. Our former location was at located at building H at Marianas High School campus from 2011 to 2018 building H was destroyed and since then our school has been displaced awaiting our new structure to be built in front of Koblerville Elementary School.

SWP: Goals, Number of Objectives Met/ Total Number of Objectives--------------School Wide Plan Amount: $42,966.00 Dollars


School Successes / Highlights


On June 05, 2023, Da’ok Academy graduated 31 students, our largest graduation yet.  Its first graduating class had 6 graduates in 2018.

NMTI Partnership (Trades Pathway) 
As a result of Super Typhoon Yutu, Da’ok Academy sustained substantial damage to its single building on the Marianas High School campus.  Fortunately, the Northern Marianas Technical Institute graciously opened its doors to Da’ok Academy to temporarily house the school by offering four classrooms and office space from 2018 to 2021.  The partnership sparked and allowed more trade course offerings to the Da’ok Academy students, allowing them to begin their journey toward a specific trade certification.  The enrollment was at 62% of the student population enrolled in an NMTI course. Each year we encourage our students to enroll in NMTI (now called NMTECH) to learn and gain certification in trades. A total of five students proactively enrolled in the year. Four 2023 graduating students and one underclassman earned their certification requirements. Two graduates continued to receive the next certification in Construction Laborer during the summer of 2023 and were successful.

Business Partnership (Entrepreneurship Pathway)
Island Training Solutions partners open an opportunity with one of our CTE Class Periods led by Mr. James Arnoski and our PSS CTE Director, Dr. Jessica Taylor. Two 2023 graduates earned their school-level certificate. A total of seven students enrolled in the year and five were underclassmen students who also earned credit for entrepreneurship course SY2022-23. 


Maritime (WPMA) Partnership (Merchant Marine Pathway)
Western Pacific Maritime Academy partners and opens an opportunity with one of our schools led by Captain Michael Bacher and our PSS CTE Director, Dr. Jessica Taylor. Four 2023 graduates earned their WPMA certificate in various specific training offerings. A total of eight students enrolled in the year and four were underclassmen students who also earned credit for Maritime CTE course SY2022-23. 

Community Engagement

Da’ok Academy successfully worked with the CNMI government agencies and individuals to build partnerships to educate students about the resources and opportunities in the community.  Key examples are the academy’s relationship with Delta Management and D'Elegance who both donated the highest tax credit worth $5,000 dollars; the donation is known as ETC to the schools for general purchase needs for students and staff, and school needs. Tan Holdings and Paradise Realty Saipan also donated $1,000 dollars for our various graduates and clubs/school activities.

Further community engagement efforts include presentations by the Department of Public Safety, Department of Fire Emergency Management Services, Tan Holdings, and Northern Marianas College around career and education opportunities.  Da’ok Academy also worked with CTSI and DQ as new business partners to offer on-the-job learning experiences for the academy’s students in the Cooperative Education program. These particular businesses are important since they are long-term partners of Da’ok Academy.

To address certain risk behaviors, Da’ok Academy partnered with the CNMI Division of Public Health Services for STD/HIV prevention and family planning presentations.  Additionally, the Northern Marianas Protection Advocacy Systems, Inc. conducted a day of team-building exercises for the students. 

For projects to support lifelong learning skills, the school partners with various community agencies on various contests and monthly themes. Examples of what the Academy has joined are with: Northern Marianas Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence, Red Riboon, and various presentation with District Courts, the Marianas Visitors Authority are joining the Christmas in the Marianas, and beach clean-ups. Working with the Micronesian Islands Nature Alliance, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the conservation of the diverse natural resources in the Marianas by tree planting and beautification project at Pau Pau Beach. Da’ok Academy proudly hosted the Suicide Prevention Awareness Month Proclamation in September 2019 at NMTI and Teen Dating Violence Month (TDVAM) in February 2023 at KobES with Da'ok Academy Students.  Da’ok Academy students authored and delivered the Proclamation at these events.

Student (B.A.S.E) Behavioral, Academic, Social, and Emotional Data:

2023 STAR Reading: The STAR proficiency is tested and screened by STAR assessments through Renaissance Learning and done in three testing windows. For screening 1 & 2 our students scored 18% proficient and 24% proficient. In the outcome assessment, screening 3 students showed overall gains of 6% proficiency in reading. 

2023 STAR Math: The STAR proficiency is tested and screened by STAR assessments through Renaissance Learning and done in three testing windows. For screening 1 our students scored 29 % proficiency. In screening 2 our students scored 30% proficient. By the outcome assessment, screening 3 showed proficiency of 37% which shows gains of 8% proficiency in math compared to the first screening. 

Reading & Achieve 3000: The students at Da’ok Academy showed growth in reading literacy as measured by Lexile reported by Achieve 3000.  The pre-assessment results had an average Lexile of 778L.  By the post-assessment, results showed an average Lexile of 974L, which is a 196L increase.  This achievement surpasses the objective of attaining a 10% growth in Lexile scores.  This is the sixth successful year of implementation of Achieve3000 at Da’ok Academy. The implementation was a success with the program used consistently every week in all English Language Arts classes. At this point, Achieve3000 is a key and routine part of the school culture.  The ELA teacher monitored student performance and provided weekly feedback. 

Project Base Learning (PBL): Other Extra Supports and Networks: Our students face various behavioral, academic, behavioral, and emotional challenges that hinder their success in larger ratio classroom schooling and settings. Our school focus is to build school culture and social-emotional learning.  This year, our PSS District adopted Character Strong for SEL (Social Emotional Learning).

The staff engaged in professional development and implementation of Positive Behavior Intervention Strategies.  Our teachers are determined to build an intrinsic motivational system of rewards while being creative to reinforce positive behaviors, and several student personal development activities were conducted.  This effort resulted in a reduction of the academy’s disciplinary rate compared to the previous years. Further, several anti-bullying and anti-violence campaigns were run at the school which is evident starting during the Red Ribbon Month in October by Chief Judge Ramona Manglona, plus LGBTQIA+ inclusion activities were conducted by our Student Support Services Program.