21 New School Districts to Build Partnership Agreements

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LANSING, MI – The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) will be entering into discussions with 21 new school districts to develop Partnership Agreements with the goal of improving achievement levels at these struggling schools in Michigan.

“These will be positive, yet pressing, conversations with the leaders of these districts to get their struggling schools back on track,” Whiston said. “We want to provide as many local and state-level partners as possible to help students in these schools be successful.”

This is the third group of districts to be offered Partnership Agreements, with the goal of improving achievement levels at their struggling schools.

Whiston said that the work being done in the current Partnership Districts has laid the foundation for stronger schools, stronger educators, and greater success by the students – helping Michigan become a Top 10 education state in 10 years.

“It’s been encouraging to watch districts making progress,” Whiston said. “What we’ve seen in the first Partnership Districts exhibits the positive opportunity to work together under the leadership of the local superintendent and the local board of education toward improving student achievement and outcomes.”

As a result of improving academic achievement, MDE is removing 33 schools from the list of identified Priority Schools from previous years. Through the diligent work of the educators and students in those schools, test scores have improved and will be expected to continue on their positive trends.

“Schools are identifying the needs of their teachers and students, developing strategies to address those needs, and showing progress,” Whiston said. “The focus on improvement and plans being implemented through our Top 10 in 10 work are beginning to show positive results. They need more time to build from here.”

The 21 new Partnership Districts were identified for Partnership District discussions based on having Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI) schools identified in their districts. Under the state’s plan to implement the federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), struggling schools are identified as either Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI) schools; Targeted Support and Improvement Schools (TSI); or Additional Targeted Support (ATS) schools.

Approved by the U.S. Department of Education on November 28, 2017, this is the first time these identifications have been made, using Michigan’s ESSA School Accountability system.

State Superintendent Brian Whiston will be arranging initial Partnership District meetings with the following traditional school districts and Public School Academies (PSA):

Baldwin Community Schools
Detroit Delta Prep Academy for Social Justice (PSA) – Detroit
Detroit Leadership Academy (PSA) – Detroit
Detroit Public Safety Academy (PSA) – Detroit
Ecorse Public Schools
El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz Academy (PSA) – Lansing
Flint School District
Frederick Douglass International Academy (PSA) – Oak Park
GEE Edmonson Academy (PSA) – Detroit
Genesee STEM Academy (PSA) – Flint
Grand Rapids Public Schools
Great Lakes Academy (PSA) – Pontiac
Joy Preparatory Academy (PSA) – Detroit
Insight School of Michigan (PSA) – Lansing
Macomb Montessori Academy (PSA) – Warren
Muskegon Public Schools
Pathways Academy (PSA) – Detroit
Saginaw Preparatory Academy (PSA) – Saginaw
Sarah J. Webber Media Arts Academy (PSA) – Pontiac
Southwest Detroit Community School (PSA) – Detroit
William C. Abney Academy Elementary (PSA) – Grand Rapids

Whiston said this is a positive opportunity to work together under the leadership of the local superintendent and the local board of education to improve student achievement and outcomes, with an explicit and detailed understanding between all partners.

Currently, there are 16 Partnership Districts in Michigan. Two of those districts will have additional schools added to their Partnership Agreements, based on the same criteria as the schools in the 21 new districts. Detroit Public Schools Community District will be adding 15 schools to its current Partnership Agreement; and River Rouge School District will be adding one school.

Next Steps

Under a Partnership Agreement, each local district remains in total control of its schools with support from MDE and partners, Whiston said. Each agreement includes 18- and 36-month accountability timelines when they will be evaluated on the progress toward their goals.

“This has been a remarkable experience with the current Partnership Districts, and helping them start implementing their improvement strategies,” Whiston said. “We look forward to working with the 21 new districts to help them build their Partnership Agreements.”

MDE will be providing resources for the districts to utilize in identifying their needs and developing a plan to improve. These include: needs assessment tools, evidence?based practices, draft Partnership Agreement, lists of potential partners and contact information.

Under a Partnership Agreement, the local district remains in total control of its schools with support from MDE and partners. The districts have 90 days to reach an agreement. If no agreement is reached, the next level of accountability would be implemented.

With multiple partners – including local board members, the intermediate school district, education organizations, business, community members, parents, higher education organizations, foundations – committing to be actively engaged, work will ensue to identify a plan of supports and interventions that will improve student outcomes.

Academic outcomes are a primary focus, and other whole child outcomes that can impede improved academics like health, nutrition, behavior, social/emotional issues also will be addressed.

The Michigan Department of Education works intensely with the Partnership Districts, with each district having been assigned a liaison from MDE. This person is responsible for supporting the district in implementation of its agreement; helping resolve problems and breaking down barriers; facilitating discussions and meetings; and ensuring that the Partnership District receives maximum support for success from MDE, as well as from the partners and other state agencies.

This Partnership Model puts a broad spectrum of technical expertise and resources in the hands of the school district and allows local districts to use community and state-level support systems to drive improvement and self-accountability. The ultimate benefit would be to regenerate a struggling school to be one that helps students and teachers achieve at higher levels.

New Partnership Districts

 

District NameBuilding NameIdentification
Baldwin Community SchoolsBaldwin Junior High SchoolComprehensive Support and Intervention
Detroit Delta Preparatory Academy for Social JusticeDetroit Delta Preparatory Academy for Social JusticeComprehensive Support and Intervention
Detroit Leadership AcademyDetroit Leadership Academy Middle/HighComprehensive Support and Intervention
Detroit Public Safety AcademyDetroit Public Safety AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Ecorse Public SchoolsEcorse Community High SchoolComprehensive Support and Intervention
El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz AcademyEl-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Flint, School District of the City ofAccelerated Learning AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Holmes STEM AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Northwestern High SchoolComprehensive Support and Intervention
Potter SchoolComprehensive Support and Intervention
Frederick Douglass International AcademyFrederick Douglass International AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
GEE Edmonson AcademyGEE Edmonson AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Genesee STEM AcademyGenesee STEM AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Grand Rapids Public SchoolsAlger Middle SchoolComprehensive Support and Intervention
Great Lakes AcademyGreat Lakes AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Insight School of MichiganInsight School of MichiganComprehensive Support and Intervention
Joy Preparatory AcademyJoy Preparatory AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Macomb Montessori AcademyMacomb Montessori AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Muskegon, Public Schools of the City ofMuskegon Community Education CenterComprehensive Support and Intervention
Pathways AcademyPathways AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Saginaw Preparatory AcademySaginaw Preparatory AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Sarah J. Webber Media Arts AcademySarah J. Webber Media Arts AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Southwest Detroit Community SchoolSouthwest Detroit Community SchoolComprehensive Support and Intervention
William C. Abney AcademyWilliam C. Abney Academy ElementaryComprehensive Support and Intervention

 

Current Partnership Districts Adding Schools

 

District NameBuilding NameIdentification
Detroit Public Schools Community DistrictA. Philip Randolph Technical High SchoolComprehensive Support and Intervention
Brenda Scott Academy for Theatre ArtsComprehensive Support and Intervention
Brown, Ronald AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Carleton Elementary SchoolComprehensive Support and Intervention
Douglass Academy for Young MenComprehensive Support and Intervention
Eastside Detroit Lions AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Fisher Magnet Lower AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Gardner Elementary SchoolComprehensive Support and Intervention
Garvey AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Mark Twain Elementary-Middle SchoolComprehensive Support and Intervention
Medicine and Community Health Academy at CodyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Nichols Elementary-Middle SchoolComprehensive Support and Intervention
Osborn College Preparatory AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Osborn Evergreen Academy of Design and Alternative EnergyComprehensive Support and Intervention
Robeson Academy, Malcolm X AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention
River Rouge, School District of the City ofCB Sabbath 6-8 Preparatory AcademyComprehensive Support and Intervention

 

Schools Exiting Priority School Status

 

District NameBuilding NameCohort
Academy of WarrenAcademy of Warren2015
Battle Creek Public SchoolsVerona Elementary School2012
Beecher Community School DistrictBeecher High School2010
Benton Harbor Charter School AcademyBenton Harbor Charter School Academy2015
Bradford AcademyBradford Academy2016
Crescent AcademyCrescent Academy Middle School2016
Detroit Community SchoolsDetroit Community Schools – High School2016
Detroit Public Schools Community DistrictBagley Elementary School2015
Carver Elementary-Middle School2016
Detroit City West Side Academy for Leadership Development2011
Edison Elementary School2015
Escuela AvancemosEscuela Avancemos2016
Flint, School District of the City ofSouthwestern Classical Academy2014
George Washington Carver AcademyGeorge Washington Carver Elementary School2016
George Washington Carver AcademyGeorge Washington Carver Middle School2016
Grand Rapids Public SchoolsBurton Elementary School2015
Ken-O-Sha Park Elementary2014
Hazel Park, School District of the City ofInvest Roosevelt Alternative High School2015
L’Anse Creuse Public SchoolsDiAnne M. Pellerin Center2016
Marvin L. Winans Academy of Performing ArtsMarvin L. Winans Academy – Elementary2014
Multicultural AcademyMulticultural Academy2015
Muskegon, Public Schools of the City ofNelson Elementary School2014
Oak Park, School District of the City ofOak Park Preparatory Academy2015
Plymouth Educational Center Charter SchoolPlymouth Educational Center2016
Port Huron Area School DistrictCleveland Elementary School2015
Redford Union Schools, District No. 1Beech Elementary2014
Saginaw, School District of the City ofArthur Hill High School2014
Southgate Community School DistrictAsher School2015
Taylor School DistrictMyers Elementary School2015
Timbuktu AcademyTimbuktu Academy2016
Van Dyke Public SchoolsLincoln Elementary School2014
Westwood Heights SchoolsHamady Middle School2015
Ypsilanti Community SchoolsYpsilanti Community Middle School2014