PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) - President Barack Obama Monday weighed in on the recent firing ofall teachers at thelong-struggling Central Falls High School.
Obama said during a speech in Washington Monday that there needsto be "accountability" if a school continually fails its studentswithout improvement.
"If a school continues to fail year after year after year anddoesn’t show sign of improvements then there has got to be asense of accountability. That happened in Rhode Island last week,"Obama said.
The president weighed in Monday while launching an initiative tocombat the problem of high school drop outs. The program, called "GradNation," is a public/private partnership to improve thecountry's worst schools. Only 48 percent of Central Falls studentsgraduate.
During his remarks, the president also pointed out just sevenpercent of students at the high school have tested proficient inmath.
"When a school board wasn’t able to deliver change byother means, they voted to layoff the faculty and the staff. And asmy education secretary Arne Duncan says, our kids get only onechance at an education, and we need to get it right," Obamasaid.
Education Secretary Arne Duncan backed the firings last week,after the
Obama continued to say that the students need to be the focus ofchange.
"Of course getting it right requires more than just transformingour lowest performing schools. It requires giving students who arebehind in school a chance to catch up and a path to a diploma," hesaid. "It requires focusing on students from middle school throughhigh school who face factors at home."
Education Commissioner Deborah A. Gist statement on remarksPresident Obama made on Central Falls High School:
I very much appreciate the support from President Obama for the decisions we have made regarding Central Falls High School. Though these decisions have been difficult, I am confident that we have made our decisions based on the best interest of the Central Falls students.
The need to intervene in our persistently lowest-achieving schools is urgent. It is significant that the President referenced Central Falls High School, with its graduation rate of only 48 percent, at a meeting on dropout prevention. I strongly agree with the President that dropping out of school means not only giving up on your future, but also giving up on your family's future and giving up on your country's future.
To reform Central Falls High School, Superintendent Gallo and the Central Falls School Board chose the turnaround model, which will involve:
- Hiring a new principal who will have sufficient operational flexibility to implement fully a comprehensive approach to substantially improving student achievement and graduation rates;
- Effectively screening and evaluating existing staff to determine who will return to the school and recruiting new staff who can work within the turnaround environment to meet the needs of Central Falls students;
- Developing a comprehensive instructional program that meets the academic needs of students;
- Effectively using data to inform instruction;
- Providing high-quality, job-embedded professional development; and,
- Creating governance structures, supports, and schedules that expand opportunities for students.
I support Superintendent Gallo’s decision, and I will continue to work with her and the Central Falls community to create a high school that prepares all of its students for success in college, careers, and life.
Copyright WPRI 12
Be prepared for when winter weather hits by using our interactive radar to track the upcoming storm's path, as well as vital resources for extreme cold and heavy snowfall.
Mansfield's outdoor amphitheater is changing its name for the fourth time in 14 years.
A local woman was upset after what she thought was a great Cyber Monday deal turned out to be a dud.
Police say a 52-year-old Revere woman has died after being struck and dragged about a half-mile by an MBTA bus.
A man charged with kidnapping, robbing and killing one woman and assaulting three others pleaded not guilty Wednesday and was ordered held at a state psychiatric facility without bail.