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Empowerment Schools

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NEWS
March 11, 2002 | By TIMOTHY POTTS
IN HIS recent proposal to hike local taxes for public education, Gov. Schweiker nevertheless found some state cash for a new "empowerment" program. A companion to the program for entire school districts that are struggling academically, the Empowerment School Initiative targets individual schools for special attention and possible state or private takeover. The budget provides $1.8 million for the schools - $75 a student. Identifying individual schools that need improvement is a sound idea because the average performance of districts can hide the fact that some schools within a district are dreadful.
NEWS
August 20, 2010 | By DAFNEY TALES, talesd@phillynews.com 215-854-5084
For the first time, a majority of students in the Philadelphia School District attend schools that have met the federal academic standards under "No Child Left Behind," officials said. Superintendent Arlene Ackerman will be joined by Gov. Rendell to announce the good news today at Lincoln High School, 3201 Ryan Ave., a district spokesman said. Of the district's 265 schools and two alternative schools added to the list of schools that made Adequate Yearly Progress by the state this year, 158 made AYP, a 33 percent increase from the 119 schools that made AYP last year, district officials said.
NEWS
August 11, 2009 | By DAFNEY TALES, talesd@phillynews.com 215-854-5084
Hundreds of school administrators who packed an auditorium to revel in their accomplishments from last school year yesterday listened to their leader press for further success in the coming year. Addressing district principals and assistant principals at the Summer Leadership Institute, an annual brainstorming session, district Superintendent Arlene Ackerman said that administrators should embody a sense of urgency. "I'm going to challenge each of you to take responsibility for all of your children," she said at the Girard Academic Music Program, 22nd and Ritner streets.
NEWS
August 21, 2010
The Philadelphia school system achieved another major benchmark with the latest results showing significant gains on the state's standardized tests. It almost goes without saying that the district still has a long way to go to improve student achievement to an acceptable level, but the current scores are nonetheless worth saluting. For the 2009-10 school year, 158 of the city's 267 schools, or 59 percent, met the benchmark for "adequate yearly progress" under the federal No Child Left Behind law, according to district data.
NEWS
June 17, 2010 | By Kristen A. Graham, Inquirer Staff Writer
Philadelphia public schools reached a new milestone this year - the majority of city students met state standards in reading and math for the first time since 2002, when Pennsylvania began administering tests under the No Child Left Behind law. It also marks the eighth straight year that city scores are up. Overall, 57 percent of students met goals in math and 51 percent met them in reading. Scores were up five points in math and three points in reading over the last year.
NEWS
May 22, 2009
RE Principal Irvin's comments on May 9 relating to why University City High School teachers had met with PFT President Jerry Jordan. There were two misleading implications. The first is that teachers are reluctant to step up to the plate. "Grumbling" because "you raise the bar for teachers" is a simplistic perspective that underscores the colossal disconnect and paucity of communication between the administration and staff. There are numerous genuine, far-reaching and consequential issues that require resolution.
NEWS
October 29, 2009 | By Kristen A. Graham INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
More changes are afoot in Philadelphia School Superintendent Arlene Ackerman's administration. Chief academic officer Maria Pitre-Martin, who has been in Philadelphia for just a year, is leaving, Ackerman announced yesterday. Pitre-Martin has accepted a job with the North Carolina Department of Education, a district spokesman said Tuesday night. Pitre-Martin, who recently married, is moving to be near her husband, the spokesman said. Pitre-Martin previously worked as a teacher and administrator in Texas and Louisiana.
NEWS
June 16, 2010 | By Kristen A. Graham, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Philadelphia Superintendent Arlene Ackerman said Wednesday that city students' state test scores are up for the eighth consecutive year. "For the first time ever, more than half of our students now score in the proficient or advanced level," Ackerman said in brief remarks before the School Reform Commission. Students in third through eighth grade and eleventh grade took the exams in reading and math this spring. Ackerman also said that the district's "Empowerment" schools - 105 chronically failing schools given extra supports and closer scrutiny by the central office - mostly showed "significant and dramatic" gains in reading and math.
NEWS
August 11, 2009 | By Kristen A. Graham INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
It was back to school yesterday for 600 Philadelphia School District administrators, and Superintendent Arlene Ackerman greeted them with good and bad news. On the up side: For the seventh year in a row, test scores are up. Forty-four percent of Philadelphia schools, or 118 of 265, made "adequate yearly progress," meeting their goals under the federal No Child Left Behind law, Ackerman said. That's an increase of five schools over last year. Sixteen schools that had never met state standards before did so. The dropout rate was 44 percent in 2008-09, down from 47 percent the previous year.
NEWS
July 15, 2009 | By CHRISTOPHER PASLAY
THERE'S a line in the movie "JFK" where Kevin Costner explains to the jury that theoretical physics can prove that an elephant can hang from a cliff with his tail tied to a daisy. "But use your eyes, your common sense," Costner tells the jury. This is good advice when it comes to the racial achievement gap in the Philadelphia public schools. Recently, with the settlement of the decades-old desegregation suit against the school district, district and city officials have suggested that unequal school conditions are the reason white students have higher math and reading skills than black and Latino students.
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NEWS
February 5, 2013 | Elmer Smith, For the Daily News
I KNEW ARLENE Ackerman before I met her. I knew she had devoted her life to teaching and caring for other people's children. I knew she was driven by a faith that her children could access the abundance America offers to the well-prepared through her gift for teaching. The doctorate from Harvard, the two master's degrees were impressive credentials. Her success in raising test scores when she headed school districts in San Francisco and Washington, D.C., validated her qualifications.
NEWS
August 21, 2010
The Philadelphia school system achieved another major benchmark with the latest results showing significant gains on the state's standardized tests. It almost goes without saying that the district still has a long way to go to improve student achievement to an acceptable level, but the current scores are nonetheless worth saluting. For the 2009-10 school year, 158 of the city's 267 schools, or 59 percent, met the benchmark for "adequate yearly progress" under the federal No Child Left Behind law, according to district data.
NEWS
August 21, 2010 | By Kristen A. Graham, Inquirer Staff Writer
On paper, Roosevelt Middle School never should have made it. Situated in the heart of Germantown, the school has enormous challenges - 85 percent of its 500 students live in poverty. Twenty-three percent need special-education services. Many of its students - seventh and eighth graders - are mothers and fathers. Based on the rate of violent incidents there, it was named a "persistently dangerous" school by the state. "But if you think miracles can't happen, look at us," said Stefanie Ressler, who's been principal for three years.
NEWS
August 20, 2010 | By DAFNEY TALES, talesd@phillynews.com 215-854-5084
For the first time, a majority of students in the Philadelphia School District attend schools that have met the federal academic standards under "No Child Left Behind," officials said. Superintendent Arlene Ackerman will be joined by Gov. Rendell to announce the good news today at Lincoln High School, 3201 Ryan Ave., a district spokesman said. Of the district's 265 schools and two alternative schools added to the list of schools that made Adequate Yearly Progress by the state this year, 158 made AYP, a 33 percent increase from the 119 schools that made AYP last year, district officials said.
NEWS
June 17, 2010 | By Kristen A. Graham, Inquirer Staff Writer
Philadelphia public schools reached a new milestone this year - the majority of city students met state standards in reading and math for the first time since 2002, when Pennsylvania began administering tests under the No Child Left Behind law. It also marks the eighth straight year that city scores are up. Overall, 57 percent of students met goals in math and 51 percent met them in reading. Scores were up five points in math and three points in reading over the last year.
NEWS
June 16, 2010 | By Kristen A. Graham, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Philadelphia Superintendent Arlene Ackerman said Wednesday that city students' state test scores are up for the eighth consecutive year. "For the first time ever, more than half of our students now score in the proficient or advanced level," Ackerman said in brief remarks before the School Reform Commission. Students in third through eighth grade and eleventh grade took the exams in reading and math this spring. Ackerman also said that the district's "Empowerment" schools - 105 chronically failing schools given extra supports and closer scrutiny by the central office - mostly showed "significant and dramatic" gains in reading and math.
NEWS
October 29, 2009 | By Kristen A. Graham INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
More changes are afoot in Philadelphia School Superintendent Arlene Ackerman's administration. Chief academic officer Maria Pitre-Martin, who has been in Philadelphia for just a year, is leaving, Ackerman announced yesterday. Pitre-Martin has accepted a job with the North Carolina Department of Education, a district spokesman said Tuesday night. Pitre-Martin, who recently married, is moving to be near her husband, the spokesman said. Pitre-Martin previously worked as a teacher and administrator in Texas and Louisiana.
NEWS
August 27, 2009 | By Kristen A. Graham INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
With state aid to city schools still a question mark, the Philadelphia School District and its largest union agreed to a contract extension yesterday, though an official said the sides were still far apart on most issues. The Philadelphia Federation of Teachers' pact was set to expire on Monday, but with the extension, teachers' current salary, benefits, and working conditions will stay in place through Oct. 31. In a statement, Superintendent Arlene Ackerman, School Reform Commission Chair Robert L. Archie Jr., and union president Jerry Jordan said the deal would allow for a smooth opening of school on Sept.
NEWS
August 13, 2009 | By DAFNEY TALES, talesd@phillynews.com 215-854-5084
Convening for the first time since summer break, the School Reform Commission received preliminary data yesterday that showed what Superintendent Arlene Ackerman called the "good and the bad. " Test scores, up for the seventh straight year, rose to 52 percent performing at grade level in math and 48 percent in reading, an increase of about 3 percentage points in each category from the previous year, according to district figures released yesterday....
NEWS
August 11, 2009 | By Kristen A. Graham INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
It was back to school yesterday for 600 Philadelphia School District administrators, and Superintendent Arlene Ackerman greeted them with good and bad news. On the up side: For the seventh year in a row, test scores are up. Forty-four percent of Philadelphia schools, or 118 of 265, made "adequate yearly progress," meeting their goals under the federal No Child Left Behind law, Ackerman said. That's an increase of five schools over last year. Sixteen schools that had never met state standards before did so. The dropout rate was 44 percent in 2008-09, down from 47 percent the previous year.
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