No matter what is said at any Board meeting hosted by SCPS, the State of MD requires that Crisfield High School (CHS) be "restructured" since it failed four years consecutively. The State has 78 MD schools in "restructuring" currently, and more in the past. The MD Dept of Education "Restructuring" professional met with our Board last week at UMES, a meeting that I attended, and the State's singular option available to CHS after failing four years is to "restructure". This involves replacement of approximately 25% of CHS teachers who are not performing and perhaps includes CHS administrators - some who have been there for the four years of failure.
Some MD schools that have completed this "restructuring" have been removed from the "failure" list in only two years. CHS has a total of 43 educators and administration, thus, odds are that replacement of 12 personnel at CHS with "can do, expert, and dedicated professionals" can return CHS to academic success quickly. The cost for this approach is zero - no schools are rearranged, no students rerouted to unknown schools, no "betting on the come" that this new school alignment will solve the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) requirements.
It's most important to note that Ms. Miles did not speak at all on how the "derivative/consolidated" school initiative she pitched solved the MD current requirement to restructure, or, more importantly, how it would guarantee success that CHS and Washington High will pass NCLB. It must also be noted that Somerset Intermediate School is still under "watch" status as it failed 08, 09, and 2010 NCLB requirements. By the way, Woodson Primary also failed last year, thus, Somerset County has 4 out of 7 schools in "failure" status. Thus, in Somerset County we have far more school issues to vent with the Board of Education than just CHS.
The real issue for Somerset schools is academic achievement for our children - moving schools, changing grades at existing schools, etc., has nothing to do with academic achievement and just CLOUDS the real issue, which is - effective TEACHING!!! What matters is who is in front of the class and who is managing (principal) the school to make sure that the teacher in front of that class is performing in the manner that warrants success. Additionally, the school and Central Office administration must implement and follow through on corrective actions for the failing schools - and this is where CHS has failed. There have been effective "corrective action plans" for CHS, however, there has been virtually no follow through on these plans at the CHS and Central Office level - for four years!!!!
Parents, taxpayers, citizens, members of the Board of Education, City Councilmen and County Commissioners, this educational problem we have in our Somerset Schools has already been solved in the Terrapin State and also across our great nation. Experts at our State level have the keys to success as do experts at websites such as "education.com", "learningpt.org", etc., etc., etc. Without exception, the experts agree that small schools, small student to teacher ratios, managing risk, intervention, extended day/week/year instruction, effective teachers and adamant administrators are the keys to success. Please, why can't we of Somerset County make this simple solution happen for the benefit of our students and the future of our County??