Discussions Begin with 21 New Districts To Build Partnership Agreements

Contact: Martin Ackley, Director of Public and Governmental Affairs 517-241-4395
Agency: Education

March 30, 2018

LANSING – 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, evidenceā€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 Name

Building Name

Identification

Baldwin Community Schools

Baldwin Junior High School

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Detroit Delta Preparatory Academy for Social Justice

Detroit Delta Preparatory Academy for Social Justice

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Detroit Leadership Academy

Detroit Leadership Academy Middle/High

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Detroit Public Safety Academy

Detroit Public Safety Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Ecorse Public Schools

Ecorse Community High School

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz Academy

El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Flint, School District of the City of

Accelerated Learning Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Holmes STEM Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Northwestern High School

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Potter School

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Frederick Douglass International Academy

Frederick Douglass International Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

GEE Edmonson Academy

GEE Edmonson Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Genesee STEM Academy

Genesee STEM Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Grand Rapids Public Schools

Alger Middle School

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Great Lakes Academy

Great Lakes Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Insight School of Michigan

Insight School of Michigan

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Joy Preparatory Academy

Joy Preparatory Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Macomb Montessori Academy

Macomb Montessori Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Muskegon, Public Schools of the City of

Muskegon Community Education Center

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Pathways Academy

Pathways Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Saginaw Preparatory Academy

Saginaw Preparatory Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Sarah J. Webber Media Arts Academy

Sarah J. Webber Media Arts Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Southwest Detroit Community School

Southwest Detroit Community School

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

William C. Abney Academy

William C. Abney Academy Elementary

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Current Partnership Districts Adding Schools

District Name

Building Name

Identification

Detroit Public Schools Community District

A. Philip Randolph Technical High School

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Brenda Scott Academy for Theatre Arts

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Brown, Ronald Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Carleton Elementary School

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Douglass Academy for Young Men

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Eastside Detroit Lions Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Fisher Magnet Lower Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Gardner Elementary School

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Garvey Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Mark Twain Elementary-Middle School

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Medicine and Community Health Academy at Cody

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Nichols Elementary-Middle School

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Osborn College Preparatory Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Osborn Evergreen Academy of Design and Alternative Energy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

Robeson Academy, Malcolm X Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

River Rouge, School District of the City of

CB Sabbath 6-8 Preparatory Academy

Comprehensive Support and Intervention

 

Schools Exiting Priority School Status

District Name

Building Name

Cohort

Academy of Warren

Academy of Warren

2015

Battle Creek Public Schools

Verona Elementary School

2012

Beecher Community School District

Beecher High School

2010

Benton Harbor Charter School Academy

Benton Harbor Charter School Academy

2015

Bradford Academy

Bradford Academy

2016

Crescent Academy

Crescent Academy Middle School

2016

Detroit Community Schools

Detroit Community Schools - High School

2016

Detroit Public Schools Community District

Bagley Elementary School

2015

Carver Elementary-Middle School

2016

Detroit City West Side Academy for Leadership Development

2011

Edison Elementary School

2015

Escuela Avancemos

Escuela Avancemos

2016

Flint, School District of the City of

Southwestern Classical Academy

2014

George Washington Carver Academy

George Washington Carver Elementary School

2016

George Washington Carver Academy

George Washington Carver Middle School

2016

Grand Rapids Public Schools

Burton Elementary School

2015

Ken-O-Sha Park Elementary

2014

Hazel Park, School District of the City of

Invest Roosevelt Alternative High School

2015

L'Anse Creuse Public Schools

DiAnne M. Pellerin Center

2016

Marvin L. Winans Academy of Performing Arts

Marvin L. Winans Academy - Elementary

2014

Multicultural Academy

Multicultural Academy

2015

Muskegon, Public Schools of the City of

Nelson Elementary School

2014

Oak Park, School District of the City of

Oak Park Preparatory Academy

2015

Plymouth Educational Center Charter School

Plymouth Educational Center

2016

Port Huron Area School District

Cleveland Elementary School

2015

Redford Union Schools, District No. 1

Beech Elementary

2014

Saginaw, School District of the City of

Arthur Hill High School

2014

Southgate Community School District

Asher School

2015

Taylor School District

Myers Elementary School

2015

Timbuktu Academy

Timbuktu Academy

2016

Van Dyke Public Schools

Lincoln Elementary School

2014

Westwood Heights Schools

Hamady Middle School

2015

Ypsilanti Community Schools

Ypsilanti Community Middle School

2014