State's intervention in MPS could last five years - Montgomery Alabama news.

State's intervention in MPS could last five years

(Source: WSFA 12 News) (Source: WSFA 12 News)
(Source: WSFA 12 News) (Source: WSFA 12 News)
(Source: WSFA 12 News) (Source: WSFA 12 News)
(Source: WSFA 12 News) (Source: WSFA 12 News)
(Source: WSFA 12 News) (Source: WSFA 12 News)

With big changes coming for many Montgomery public schools, parents are getting their first chance to talk face to face with those in charge of the system takeover. They're also learning more about the plan to turn around under-performing schools.

The plan is being outlined in a series of public forums on the state intervention in MPS, the first of which was held Monday night at Lee High School.

“These forums are an opportunity for all of Montgomery citizens to have a chance to come out, ask questions, have their voices be heard and really get into the depths of the intervention into Montgomery Public Schools,” explained Malissa Valdes-Hubert with Alabama State Department of Education (ALSDE).

A number of issues were covered, including job stability of teachers, a possible time frame for the intervention, and the overall goals.

It's the beginning of an “involved process,” ALSDE officials told the crowd.

The presentation was followed by a question and answer session.

On Feb. 9, 2017, the Alabama State Board of Education approved State Superintendent Michael Sentance’s recommendation to intervene into MPS. This was determined based on deficiencies in finances, operations, transportation, and student performance.

ALSDE is splitting the system in two during the intervention after determining a state takeover of 27 low-performing schools was necessary. The other 29 schools will remain under MPS Board and Superintendent control.

The state will be addressing curriculum, leadership, personnel, school culture, community engagement, and financial and operational management as they assume control and management of the 27 impacted schools.

Teams will be going into each school to address challenges.

Financial, operational and instructional reviews will be conducted to determine the support and resources needed to make necessary improvements throughout the district.

The challenges that led to the intervention in 27 schools include student academic achievement, college and career ready rates, MPS graduation rate, and chronic absenteeism.

There are currently no plans for any reconstruction efforts in any MPS schools. Decisions about personnel will be made on a case-by-case basis. Students will remain at their assigned school. Transportation services will also remain intact.

“I'm hoping that the school system can get on the right track,” said community member Alton Calhoun.

There's no time limit for the intervention. It's estimated it will continue for five years in order to make “successful and sustainable changes,” officials said.

Doris Crenshaw, who runs the Southern Youth Leadership Development Institute, a local program, attended the forum and says it's important for the community to be informed and involved.

“If we're going to work with students in these schools, that we need to know the issues and we need to know what they're talking about for the solutions and we need to become a part of the solution,” Crenshaw stated.

The State Department of Education will evaluate MPS every year to determine whether the intervention should continue. If adequate progress is evident, MPS would move into a monitoring phase. If a significant increase in performance doesn't occur during the intervention, it could continue beyond the estimated five years.

The next two community forums are April 25th at Sidney Lanier High School and April 27th at Park Crossing High School. The forums will be live streamed on the education department’s website and after each meeting, the footage will also be uploaded to their website. 

Schools that will be under state control include: 

Elementary Schools
Chisholm Elementary School
Dannelly Elementary School
Davis Elementary School
Dunbar-Ramer Elementary School
Highland Avenue Elementary School
Highland Gardens Elementary School
Fitzpatrick Elementary School
Floyd Elementary School
Johnson Elementary School
King Elementary School
Morris Elementary School
Nixon Elementary School
Southlawn Elementary School

Middle Schools
Bellingrath Middle School
Brewbaker Intermediate School
Brewbaker Middle School
Capitol Heights Middle School
Fews Secondary Acceleration Academy (serves both middle and high school students)
Georgia Washington Middle School
Goodwyn Middle School
McKee Middle School
Southlawn Middle School

High Schools
G.W. Carver Senior High School
Jefferson Davis High School
Park Crossing High School
Robert E. Lee High School
Sidney Lanier Senior High School

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