“It’s really difficult after all of these years to look and see no academic improvement in outcomes, and it’s not because people aren’t working hard or don’t have the right intentions or all of these things,” said board member Mary Burke. “But I’d like to hear we’re looking at how we reimagine the middle school (program). But the status quo for none of us is acceptable when we come to reading proficiencies or math proficiencies for students of color, and we need to look at our partnerships and also say the status quo is not enough.”
Burke, who does not plan to run for re-election when her term ends in 2021, said the board and district shouldn’t wait until the next renewal to find ways to improve and better track outcomes for students in Schools of Hope.
Superintendent Jen Cheatham and MMSD staff emphasized that programs like Schools of Hope give students a chance to build their social-emotional learning and non-cognitive skills through their interactions with tutors.