Saturday, June 03, 2006

Impact on Graham Hill Enormous and Unfair

Yesterday’s recommendations would result in the end of the Graham Hill Montessori program, a highly successful and popular program. The Montessori program would not survive being moved several miles away to the African American Academy, a school with a completely different mission and educational focus.

The superintendent's recommendation to close Graham Hill would also close a successful traditional education program on the basis of one year's WASL scores for one topic only, Reading. Looking at the last two years of WASL scores for Reading, Writing and Math, Graham Hill's traditional program scores higher than 8 other schools in the south and southeast clusters, including ones where it is recommended students from Graham Hill be moved. This is in direct conflict with the district criteria, "Improve and sustain academic effectiveness, including being able to demonstrate benefits of change to students and families."

Yesterday's report also admits there will not be enough room in the southeast cluster for all the Graham Hill traditional program students to attend, so they will get bused to one of five south cluster schools. No other recommendation results in children getting bused out of cluster, or being split between so many different schools. The impact on Graham Hill families is enormous and unfair.

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