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Crosstown High School, Memphis, TN

The Crosstown High design team was one of the largest and most diverse teams in the XQ Super School competition. Authorized by Shelby County Schools, Crosstown High opened in fall 2018 as a new charter school with 150 ninth-graders and will eventually grow to serve up to 550 students in grades 9-12. A diverse-by-design project-based school, Crosstown High School proves that innovation can happen anywhere. Housed in a renovated Sears office and distribution center, students focus on community contribution through community-connected projects. At Crosstown High, students take an active role in creating their own culture and community. In addition to choices related to academic projects, students can select “flex classes” that give them time to explore or cultivate interests like filmmaking and podcasting that may not show up in the classes on their transcript. Crosstown is designing the future of learning through diversity, location, culture and learning.

School Type


School Context

Small Size, High School, Urban, Member of XQ Network


  • Outcomes: College readiness, employability
  • Learner Experience: Personalized, project based with competencies, AP
  • Competency & Credentialing: Competency-based, extended transcript
  • Wellness: Advisory, SEL competencies, Post Secondary Planning, Academic acceleration, youth and family services, community partnerships
  • Equity: Diverse by design
  • Professional Learning: Teacher Leadership, Teaching Teams
  • Strategy: XQ Grantee
  • Partnerships: Community Partners; XQ Schools
  • Technology: Canvas

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These resources have been vetted by the project’s partner organizations. While this list highlights a diverse set of models, we know there are more innovative models around the nation. We’d love to hear about yours!

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"Texas Rural Education Association supports and collaborates with school districts in order to promote positive public education efforts. We are appreciative for these services that benefit and advocate for rural schools."

Bill Tarleton, Executive Director, Texas Rural Education Association

"Friends of Texas Public Schools know that great things happen in Texas public schools, every single day; even in a pandemic! We are thankful for resources like this that help public schools prepare for whatever the future holds."

Jennifer Storm, Executive Director, Friends of Texas Public Schools

"TABSE supports the TxLx initiative which focuses on equity and provides access to all learners."

Dr. David Harris, President of the Texas Alliance of Black School Educators