Alexandria school leaders resist state takeover of struggling school
Michael Alison Chandler:
Alexandria city officials have ramped up efforts in recent years to improve the stubbornly dismal academic performance of Jefferson-Houston School. They brought in a new principal and a group of new teachers; they hired an outside turnaround consultant and math coaches; they instituted extra tutoring, drew up blueprints for a state-of-the-art makeover and scheduled the longest school day in the city.
Posted by Jim Zellmer at February 23, 2013 1:37 AM
But Virginia lawmakers say it's too late. The state plans to take over the school, thanks to bills passed in the General Assembly last week that would create a statewide school division to oversee Virginia's chronically under-performing schools.
The move is galvanizing protests from teachers, principals and school board leaders in Alexandria and around the state. They argue it's impractical for a distant school board to manage the day-to-day details of bus rides and school lunches. And they say it's out of sync with a long American tradition of locally controlled public schools.
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