GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) - Nine West Michigan schools have landed on the state's 2011 list of 98 "persistently lowest achieving" schools, including four schools that were not on the list in 2010.
And 12 schools in the region are at the very top of the the Michigan Department of Education's top to-bottom rankings. Both lists were released Friday.
Schools on that "persistently lowest achieving" list face consequences.
They must present a "redesign plan" for state approval -- and they must implement that plan successfully or face potential state takeover.
MDE puts schools on the list when they fall in the bottom 5% of schools around the state based on student proficiency and improvement rates in math and reading, whether a school is under federal sanctions and whether a secondary school has a graduation rate below 60%.
The new schools on the list:
- Battle Creek Central High School
- Hartford Middle School in Van Buren County
- Kalamazoo Public Schools' Hillside Middle School
- WayPoint Academy charter school in Muskegon County
Repeats on the list:
- Albion High School in Calhoun County
- KPS' Maple Street Magnet and Millwood Middle School
- Muskegon Heights High School
- Grand Rapids Public Schools' Union High School
GRPS spokesman John Helmholdt said he believes the district will be able to continue with its turnaround plan approved last year for Union. He said implementation was hampered in part by staff retirement and the turnaround process should work more smoothly this year.
Discussing his district's three schools on the list -- all middle schools -- KPS Superintendent Michael Rice said "we've improved the district's middle school student achievement over the last few years, and will continue to do so. While we don't necessarily agree with this means of improving schools, we'll use it as effectively as possible to benefit kids."
Leaders of schools on the list have four "redesign" options:
- Develop teacher and school leader effectiveness, including replacement of the principal; implement "comprehensive instructional reform"; extending learning and teacher planning time; and "providing operating flexibility and sustained support"
- Replace the principal and 50% of the staff, adopt a new governance structure and implement "a new or revised instructional program"
- Reopen the school as a charter school or under an "educational management organization"
- Close the school and enroll students in "other high-achieving schools in the district"
The full top-to-bottom list is calculated differently. It's based on "student proficiency, achievement, academic growth and achievement gap in math, reading, writing, science and social studies" -- along with graduation rates for high schools, according to the MDE.
The 12 West Michigan schools that scored in the 99th percentile are:
- Forest Hills Public Schools: Ada, Central Woodlands, Goodwillie Environmental
- East Grand Rapids Public Schools: Wealthy
- Grand Haven Area Public Schools: Peach Plains
- Grand Rapids Public Schools: Blandford, City High-Middle, Zoo
- Hudsonville Public Schools: Jamestown
- Ottawa Area ISD: Ottawa Area Center
- Spring Lake Public Schools: Holmes, Jeffers
On Saturday, the Michigan State Spartans will be taking on the Ohio State Buckeyes for the Big Ten College Football title. On Friday, fans began gathering in Indianapolis for the big game.
Two Kalamazoo men are in jail after Kalamazoo officers found them with money stolen from Sunny Mart Friday afternoon.
Two people were taken to the hospital after one vehicle crossed the center line, causing a head-on crash in Ada Township Friday night.