Six Richmond & Henrico schools at risk of state take-over - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

Six Richmond & Henrico schools at risk of state take-over


Accreditation ratings from the state Department of Education also mean trouble for Richmond and Eastern Henrico. Five city schools and one in Eastern Henrico are now on the hot seat and at risk of a state takeover.

Those six schools have been accredited, but with warning for the last three years. Under a new law, that categorization means the state authority could vote to take them over too.

If your child's school is on the list, their education could change. The state is now allowed to vote to supervise and operate the facility.

In Richmond the schools at risk are Armstrong, George Wythe and John Marshall High Schools, along with Thompson and Boushall Middle Schools.

In Henrico the only school on the list, L. Douglas Wilder Middle School, is in the eastern part of the county.

In a statement, Richmond's Interim Superintendent Jonathan Lewis said,  "...we remain extremely disappointed. We are currently working diligently to revamp our instructional program so that we will start to see improved results..."

School Board Chairman Jeff Bourne didn't mince words.

When asked to describe his reaction he said, "Absolute and complete disappointment.

He believes the time for excuses has passed.

"We're going to get to the bottom of the numbers," he pledged. "We're going to see what's working, what's not working. We're going to see who's working because the elephant in the room is the people that we have in charge of our instructional program and so we've got to make some tough choices."

Over in Eastern Henrico, School Spokesman Andy Jenks said, "Our students deserve a quality education. We believe they're getting a quality education and everything they need to be successful. But there are no excuses. We have work to do, which has been underway for months."

Just last month NBC12 spoke to School Board Member Lamont Bagby, who represents Wilder Middle, about SOL scores there. He says more needs to be done but he's hopeful.

"Whatever disadvantages may exist can be overcome and that's been proven at a number of our schools," he explained.

The governor's office tells us at this point, there are no plans for a vote on the schools in Henrico and Richmond.

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