On Tuesday, the Maine Department of Education will release academic achievement data for more than 500 public schools that were reviewed in the state’s recent effort to identify 10 persistently lowest-achieving schools.

Education Commissioner Susan Gendron says she is providing the background data because several school officials, legislators and others asked for it.

On March 9, Gendron released a list of Maine’s 10 “persistently lowest-achieving schools.” They are eligible to share $12 million in federal grants if they pursue aggressive improvement plans in the Obama administration’s Race to the Top initiative.

The 10 schools have demonstrated low reading and math proficiency over three years and little progress under the federal No Child Left Behind Act, Gendron said. The schools are divided into two categories, based on eligibility for federal Title I funding, which targets students from low-income families.

One category identified Title I schools that have failed to show progress according to federal criteria for two or more years: Riverton Community School in Portland, Deer Isle-Stonington High School, Longley Elementary School in Lewiston, Houlton High School and Sumner Memorial High School in Sullivan.

The other category identified Maine high schools that are eligible for Title I funding but whose districts use the money in other schools: Carrabec High School in North Anson, Hodgdon High, Lake Region High in Naples, Livermore Falls High and Madison Area High School.

“These 10 schools are not the ‘worst’ or the worst-performing schools in the state,” Gendron said in an informational letter issued late Thursday. “They are the schools with the lowest achievement and progress by one measure in two very specific categories set by the U.S. Department of Education. Only about 85 to 90 of Maine’s schools fit into those categories; there are more than 400 other schools in the state that may have similar or lower levels of achievement.”

 

Staff Writer Kelley Bouchard can be contacted at 791-6328 or at:

[email protected]