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12 hearings Tuesday for failing Gary schools

SCHOOL HEARINGS

Principals from schools on probation will appear at hearings on Tuesday:

Bailly - 2:10 p.m.

Beveridge - 2:30 p.m.

Brunswick - 2:50 p.m.

Jefferson - 3:10 p.m.

Marquette - 3:30 p.m.

Watson - 3:50 p.m.

Webster - 4:10 p.m.

Williams - 4:30 p.m.

Dunbar-Pulaski- 4:50 p.m.

Lew Wallace - 5:10 p.m.

West Side - 5:30 p.m.

Wirt-Emerson - 5:50 p.m.

Updated: March 26, 2014 6:22AM



GARY — Improvement plans for 12 Gary Community School Corp. schools that are on state probation will be aired Tuesday in back-to-back fashion at public hearings that begin at 2 p.m. at the Gary Area Career Center, 1800 E. 35th Ave.

Principals from each school will discuss the school’s status and how they hope to make improvements.

The hearings begin at 2:10 p.m. with the Bailly Preparatory Academy and stretch until 5:50 p.m., with the principal from the Wirt-Emerson Performing Arts Academy.

The hearings are required by a state accountability law, because of low state test scores.

The district just emailed a notice about the public hearings on Monday, although it was dated Feb. 21.

The district’s dozen schools involved in Tuesday’s public hearings are in various stages of probation.

The most serious are the Lew Wallace STEM Academy and Dunbar-Pulaski Middle School. Both have posted failing scores for five straight years. With one more year of failing scores, they would face a possible state takeover or a radical turnaround plan.

The Watson Academy for Boys and the West Side Leadership Academy have posted failing scores for four straight years.

The School Board is pondering a preliminary plan that would close both Lew Wallace and Dunbar-Pulaski.

Given Gary’s large number of struggling schools, the Indiana Department of Education plans to send in teams of advisors to provide technical assistance to the schools in the coming months.

Superintendent Cheryl Pruitt said recently that each of the schools faces a different set of challenges, so different solutions are needed.

Bailly Preparatory Academy in Glen Park, for example, has the highest student mobility rate in the state, Pruitt said. The school itself was on the move last month when burst pipes damaged the school. About 400 students were relocated to the Watson Boys Academy, which has 107 students.



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