School officials traveled to Madison Park High School in Roxbury today to put teachers, administrators and students that this time they're serious about turning the school around - through an emergency "intervention team" to be assembled to figure out why an earlier "innovation plan" has failed.
This afternoon [Interim Superintendent John] McDonough and BTU President Richard Stutman jointly informed all Madison Park staff, including administrators and teachers, that there is a real potential that as a result of the intervention some staff members may be involuntarily reassigned from their positions. The intervention tools may also include replacing some leadership staff.
School officials say the latest effort is an attempt to turn around the city's only vocational school under an "innovation plan" adopted in June, 2012 that called for longer school days, new technologies and teaching material and partnerships with local businesses to provide real-world work experience to students.
Madison Park adopted all of these - including spending more than $1 million on new computers, textbooks and technical/vocational materials - but students are still underperfoming, officials say.
Last year, the average Madison Park student missed five weeks of school - with one in four Latino students missing more than seven weeks. And only 30 of the school's 1,100 students participated in an internship or co-op program with a participating company.
"None of us is meeting our obligations to prepare students for success at Madison Park," McDonough said in a statement. "We must make major changes now so Madison Park can truly become the center of excellence and it has the potential to be."
It probably didn't help much when the school's headmaster was dismissed after learning he was being investigated for possible involvement in a credit-card fraud ring.
“There have been promises made to these students but not enough progress," Mayor Walsh said in a statement. "These students have tremendous potential and they need to see real changes. The existing Innovation Plan is our roadmap to success and I have called an exceptional team together to put it in place.”
The "intervention team" will consist of three people appointed by BPS, three by the Boston Teachers Union and one appointed jointly by both. After meeting with administrators, teachers, students and parents, the team will make recommendations on using the 2012 plan more successfully.