15 Metro schools named to priority list - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

15 Metro schools named to priority list

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The Tennessee Department of Education released its list of low-performing "priority" schools Tuesday, and 15 Metro schools made the list.

The schools all ranked in the bottom 5 percent in the state for academic achievement. In 2012, the district only had six schools on the priority list.

Metro Nashville Public Schools Superintendent Jesse Register said leaders from the priority schools will be developing comprehensive plans to address the issue.

"We intend to move quickly to identify areas where progress is not being made fast enough and to make whatever changes are necessary to help students excel," Register said in a statement.

Some priority schools in Nashville will be turned over to the state.

"Once a school becomes part of the ASD (Achievement School District), it is no longer a part of the local district," said Chris Barbic, superintendent of the Achievement School District.

The ASD is a state-led district whose mission is to take the bottom 5 percent of schools in the state to the top 25 percent in five years by working with charter school partners Kipp, Lead and Rocketship.

Currently there is only one ASD school in Nashville, Lead's Brick Church College Prep in North Nashville. The state said the school has already seen progress as it tries to reach its five-year goal.

"If you look at where they are now, the school is two years in and they have had double-digit gains in math and double-digit gains in reading," Barbic said.

The remaining 22 ASD schools are in Memphis.

ASD administrators are in talks with Metro about turning more schools into ASD schools.

"We are excited about the opportunity to provide the kind of education that Lead's provided to the kids at Brick Church to other kids across Metro," Barbic said.

By next year, ASD plans to have up to two schools in Nashville. It plans to have taken over up to five Nashville schools by 2016, although it is not yet clear which ones.

"We will take the next several months working with the charter operators and working with members in the community to make more decisions about which of the schools will become a part of ASD," Barbic said.

Barbic said they plan to have the decisions made for the 2015-2016 school year by the end of this year.

Metro schools named priority schools are:

  • Bailey Middle School
  • Brick Church Middle School
  • Buena Vista Elementary School
  • Jere Baxter Middle School
  • Joelton Middle School
  • John B. Whitsitt Elementary School
  • Kirkpatrick Elementary School
  • Napier Elementary School
  • Neely's Bend Middle School
  • Pearl-Cohn Magnet High School
  • Ross Elementary School
  • Robert Churchwell Museum Magnet Elementary School
  • Madison Middle School
  • The Cohn School

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