The Indiana State Board of Education meets later this morning and will decide the fate of six failing Indianapolis Public Schools. As I told you last week, Superintendent of Public Instruction Dr. Tony Bennett has recommended the Arlington, Emma Donnan, Manual and Howe schools all be taken over by the state and that Broad Ripple and Washington schools be assigned lead partners to assist them in improving their academic performance.
From my conversations with members of the State Board over the past few months, I don’t see any reason why they won’t approve Dr. Bennett’s recommendations. There may be some questions about intervention, I am told. One thing I will be looking for in particular is any sort of amendment or resolution instructing the State Department of Education to go to the Indiana General Assembly and ask for tougher accountability laws.
A number of Board members have expressed frustration that under current law the state has to wait six years to intervene and that a failing school can get off academic probation with just a three-percent approval in end of course assessment scores.
I did speak to one board member about IPS Superintendent Dr. Eugene White’s intent to file a lawsuit against the state to stop the intervention, after that board member stopped laughing they went on to question Dr. White’s leadership at IPS and asked if he was getting ready to run for another public office.
The hearing begins this morning at 9 a.m. and could run until 3 p.m. You can follow me on Twitter for the latest updates.