New Initiative Aims to Turn Around Struggling Schools

From the West Alabama Newsroom–

The state legislature — the governor — along with state education officials — have joined forces to help 15 struggling elementary schools around the state.

The state is providing $15 million dollars in grants — to help improve the academic performance of students at targeted schools.

The new Turn Around initiative provides both financial and human resources — to help “Turn Around” fifteen under-performing elementary schools around the state.

Two of the 15 elementary schools targeted — are in the Wilcox County School District.

Wal Wilcoxtas0915 Fox Pkg“I think it will only help to take us to a higher level academically,” said Superintendent Dr. Andre Saulsberry.

“It will allow us to be able to pay for some things that we normally would not be able to get. As well as to have some additional support from the state.”

Targeted schools were selected because of consistently low student performance — in reading — math — and language arts proficiency — over the last four years.

“Remember the past 2 to 3 years. A lot of our students were at home dealing with the COVID. And we provided computers and we provided hotspots,” said Saulsberry.

“But because we are so rural connectivity simply did not exist for some students.”

J. E. Hobbs Elementary School in Camden — is one of the county’s two turnaround schools.

“The Turnaround Initiative could not have come at a better time.,” said Principal Vernita Laister.

“Because of COVID the learning loss is so great. And we need all the assistance that we can get. So, I am so happy and ecstatic about the Turnaround Initiative. Because it gives us that extra that we need for our students to be successful.”

“So, rather than looking at it as a negative thing because our students may have fallen slightly low, I’m looking at an opportunity to help our students to excel,” said Saulsberry.

ABC Elementary School in Alberta — is the county’s other — Turnaround School.

Categories: News, West Alabama