Fourteen schools in Boston need to shape up or ship out.

Superintendent Carol R. Johnson unveiled a five-year strategic plan for the Boston Public Schools, outlining new direction and priorities for “closing access and achievement gaps and graduating all BPS students from high school>”

"The days of business as usual are over," said Johnson. "If we intend to see all, not just some, of our schools become centers of excellence we must take bold and swift action. Every student in our city has the right to a high-quality education. I believe this plan is the road map that will lead us to new heights, where Boston can serve as a model for every urban school district in America."

Johnson identified 14 schools that are under-performing:

  • William Blackstone Elementary School in the South End
  • Paul Dever Elementary School in Dorchester
  • Ralph Waldo Emerson Elementary School in Roxbury
  • E. Greenwood K-8 School in Hyde Park
  • Curtis Guild Elementary School in East Boston
  • John P. Holland Elementary School in Dorchester
  • John F. Kennedy Elementary School in Jamaica Plain
  • William Monroe Trotter Elementary School in Dorchester
  • Orchard Gardens K-8 School in Roxbury
  • Maurice J. Tobin K-8 School in Roxbury
  • Henry Dearborn Middle School in Roxbury
  • Harbor Middle School in Dorchester
  • The English High School in Jamaica Plain
  • Odyssey High School in South Boston

Johnson wants to focus on strengthening teaching and leadership among school administrators, copying best practices at “working” schools and looking at ways to streamline services throughout the school district.

Mayor Thomas M. Menino, fresh off his re-election victory and a recent knee injury, sent a letter to the Boston School Committee in support of the Superintendent’s proposals.

"There may be some who will find it easier and safer to sit back, to stall — to use our stretched dollars as an excuse to postpone this critical work," Mayor Menino wrote. "To these people, I say time has run out. We can no longer wait to take action. From this day forward, we must collectively re-commit ourselves and pool our energies. With diminishing resources, it will be all the more important to think creatively and to rely on those measures that are cost effective, but reap big returns."

About The Author

John Guilfoil is the editor-in-chief of Blast: Boston's Online Magazine and the Blast Magazine Network. He can be reached at [email protected]. Tweet @johnguilfoil.

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