Accountability System Put In Place

"No Child Left Behind"... that's what President Bush is demanding of Mississippi's Public Schools... and of all public schools in America. Monday night in Biloxi ... a state department of Education representative explained how a new "accountability system" will help make sure every school is proficient... and that every child is given the education they deserve.

According to federal and state guidelines... by 2014 every single child in a Mississippi public school must be proficient. After students take a yearly standardized test... the accountability system will find the worst performing and least improving schools in the state... and name them "priority" schools. Once on that list.... the school becomes subject to state intervention. The very lowest performing schools will get technical assistance as well as an evaluation by a team of trained evaluators.

The evaluators will give the priority schools a developmental school improvement plan... and even fund individual tutoring for students.... but if a teacher doesn't improve her student's grades in one year... she could be let go.... a principal has three years to improve his or her school... and if a school stays on the priority list for more than three years.... administrators and school board members will be looked at.

State School Board member Rosetta Richard thinks the accountability system will demand the best from students and teachers... and that's what children need. She says, " we have to have expectations that say we expect you to do well... and we have to have some degree of insistence behind that expectation."

The new "accountabilty system" will be put in place this fall.