The state board of education Tuesday approved new turnaround plans for Ramona Boulevard Elementary and Arlington Middle schools, which are trying to earn C-grades or better.
The two schools are among five which are under state scrutiny and district-managed turnaround plans. If they don’t achieve a C grade this year or next, they could be closed or taken over by a charter or education management company.
The state Board of Education recently approved turnaround plans for three other Duval schools — Arlington Heights, George Washington Carver and Gregory Drive elementary schools — but sent back plans for Romana and Arlington Middle for revision.
Ramona’s plan now includes the removal of teachers with too-low student performance scores and two teachers who “need improvement” are placed on improvement plans. Training and coaching for reading and math teachers will increase and a district specialist in science will help the fifth grade science teacher in lesson planning, the plan states.
Arlington Middle’s plan includes removal of 12 teachers with unsatisfactory student performance scores and the reduction of “out-of-field” teachers, teachers with temporary certificates and long-term substitutes. Teachers also will get more training and coaching, and the principal was given authority over teachers in the school’s PRIDE unit, which helps students with emotional or behavior disorders.
Both schools have incentives to encourage fewer discipline referrals and student absences. Both schools will remove their principal if the letter grade does not improve, the plans state.
“We believe these plans … will turn around these schools,” said Pamela Stewart, Florida’s education commissioner.
Denise Smith Amos: 904-359-4083