At today's Buffalo Board of Education meeting, Superintendent James A. Williams rolled out the latest set of plans meant to turn around state-designated Persistently Lowest Achieving Schools.
The last set of plans was shown to the board on April 13th, the same day that the Joint Intervention Team Reviews were received by the district. (http://www.buffaloschools.org/news.cfm?story=2432)
* Thirteen Schools have to be turned around using one of the four models outlined by the USDE and NYSED in the fourth assurance for race to the top.
* The four models are Transformation, Turnaround, Restart and Close. BPS will use the models below.
* Race to the Top has 4 assurances that must be met:
o High Quality Standards and Assessments—Connected to Common Core Standards and Assessments—Network Teams/Inquiry Teams
o Great Teachers and Leaders—Commissioner’s Regulation 3012C, Teacher/Principal Evaluation
o Turning Around Low-Performing Schools—Buffalo has 13 Persistently Lowest Achieving Schools
o Statewide Data Systems
* Turning Around Low-Performing Schools is a mandate. This must be done whether or not the district receives funds. The School Improvement Grants (1003g) provide up to $2 million/year for 3 years.
The latest PLA plans (below) follow and involve using less of the turnaround model. This greatly reduces the number of teachers that will need to be moved under state requirements. The Board of Education has been asked by the superintendent to weigh in on the plans before they are due to the state on May 9th. Buffalo Teachers Federation President Phil Rumore spoke at tonight's meeting, saying that he would not sign any proposal that involved moving half of the teachers in a PLA school.