This, sadly, is far too common a story.
I was telling a newspaper reporter today that Central has gotten worse since I my first visit there in Spring 2001.
And I was kind of taken aback as I heard myself say that.
It sounded perposterous.
When I first visited, the school had been recently deemed academically deficient, and its principal had been demoted. Yet the difference between that school and the one today is like the difference between Yale and Penn Valley Community College.
That said, there is a lot of buzz on the school district wire of late. I heard that seven top administrators were axed yesterday, and that the new superintendent has vowed to fire anyone who has presided for more than five years over a program that has not performed well or improved. Hopefully that includes principals (and, more importantly, assistant principals) at schools like Central.
Worse (and this might be total conspiracy theory), word has it that the district has lost its Title 1 status. For those who don't know, Title 1 is a federal program that brings extra money into the district to help poor, at-risk and special ed kids. According to the current chatter, the district has misspent that money so many times that the feds have finally said enough is enough.
If this is true, the district is in a major bind.
Honestly, sounds a little far-fetched, like a tidbit of truth that's been distorted on the rumor mill. You've gotta practically kill people to get the feds to completely cut you off.
But still, a tidbit of truth is tidbit of truth.
I have no doubt that the district cronies have been mishandling the money.
It'd be a surprise if they weren't.