Educators Liability: New Smaller Themed High Schools

Educators Liability: New Smaller Themed High Schools

Schools across America are plagued by low attendance, dismal graduation rates, and overcrowding. Debate has raged on what improvements our education system needs to make and how to make those changes.

New York is trying a new attempt- by closing schools. In a large scale reform strategy, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg has closed large, low-performing high schools throughout the city. Since 2002, the city has closed or begun to phase out 63 high schools, 22 of them in the Bronx.

Instead of large, expansive schools, smaller, theme-based schools are being implemented to provide a more in depth, supportive educational experience for students. Some are even housed in the same area, such as the Stevenson Campus, with nine new high schools within its walls.

The subject matter of the schools varies widely. Attendance at the Stevenson Campus has increased from 75 percent a decade ago to 81 percent this year. Overall crime episodes and violent behavior has declined, and the graduation rate has nearly doubled, to 57.3 percent.

Subject matter for each smaller themed high school varies widely, from the School for Community Research and Learning, to video game design at the Bronx Compass and literature discussions at the Millennium Art Academy.

It’s a unique approach to reforming traditional education, an attempt to shrink school classroom sizes and introduce more themed, unique curriculum to challenge and engage students.

The changes have not been seamless. With the transition to smaller schools, a whole range of risks, liabilities, and challenges have emerged. Not all of the smaller, themed schools have been successful and some are already being phased out. Leadership for multiple smaller schools is difficult.

Regardless of the changes, education systems still require specific coverage designed to fit their needs. PGU School Board programs are tailored specifically for public, parochial, and nonprofit private school entities including colleges, universities, and vocational training schools. Contact us today for more information. 800-586-6502