Rhode Island Update: The Politics of Successful New Schools

Blogs, Letters & Testimonials

July 20, 2011

Some good news from Rhode Island this week in today’s Providence Journal which celebrates the early success of the flagship Rhode Island Mayoral Academies school in Blackstone Valley. The editorial, quoting State Commish Deborah Gist, notes how rare it is for any school in the state to have 100% of students showing proficiency or better on state exams.

Kudos to the teachers, parents, and students who pulled together to make this such a promising development in education reform.
The politics here are important: the state’s Board of Regents is set to vote very soon on an application from Cranston Mayor Alan Fung to open the second “Mayoral Academy” serving students from Providence and Cranston. We’ve come a long way from the initial concept papers and the movement to create a climate in Rhode Island which would “open the drawbridge” to high quality school operators who had previously ignored the Ocean State because of all of the red tape and restrictions on education innovation.