Changes for Petersburg Public Schools amid state accreditation announcement

By Melissa Correa - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

PETERSBURG, VA (WWBT) - Petersburg Public School's has some explaining to do.

"We've done some incredible work, but we've not arrived. There's so much more that has to be done," said Dr. James Victory, Superintendent for Petersburg City Public Schools.

In the midst of celebrating Petersburg High, Walnut Hill and Robert E. Lee now being fully accredited by the state, the district is on pins and needles, waiting for the outcome of AP Hill Elementary's status after an investigation into why up to a dozen students didn't take the SOL test.

"The State Board of Education has to take into account the presentations that were made today by Virginia Department of Education personnel. Tomorrow, I think there'll be some consideration as to whether or not there is support into whether AP Hill will be fully accredited," said James.

It may get the seal of approval, because investigators calculated even if those students took the test and failed, the school would still meet requirements. But even after that decision, three schools - John Vernons, Peabody and JEB Stuart - still fail to meet state standards.

"And along the work of getting this done- you have to meet specific bench marks and to this particular point we've still fallen short," he said.

And while he won't discuss specifics, trading out principals at AP Hill is a clear sign of change. As for the plan of action for the entire district, parents will be needed to upgrade education techniques.

"We will certainly be talking to our parents and they'll have the have the opportunity to interact with us and they'll have the opportunity to get some hands on workshops about the support that parents can give us as we do this hard work of educating children," James said.

(c) 2009. WWBT, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.