During July and August of 2012, Ann conducted seven informational meetings Coventry town and school officials to identify issues relating to schools. Based on these meetings, she identified four critical goals to work toward if elected to the Coventry School Committee:
1. Raise student performance levels. Standardized test scores and school ratings indicate that Coventry is most often in the middle of the pack. July 19, 2012, the Providence Journal published an editorial and article about school ratings. Rhode Island has a new system for measuring and classifying school performance. Schools can be rated as "Commended," "Leading," "Typical," and "Warning."
Our high school is rated "Typical. The middle school is rated "Typical," and one elementary school is "Leading," four are rated "Typical," and one is rated "Warning." Can't we do better? Why aren't we doing better? There are other measures, of course, to measure student performance. The above is just one that should make us take notice.
2. Fix the physical infrastructure at our schools. Our high school needs a new roof and almost all our schools need some HVAC work, and, of course, our high school does not meet state fire code standards. We have been patching for a long time. The schools need work.
3. Improve our high school accreditation rating. Our high school was accredited in 2010 and placed on "Warning." Why? The physical infrastructure, along with other factors including curriculum, was cited. We were given five years to correct our situation - only three are left. The bond will help us. We do not want our high school to lose its accreditation.
The consequences are serious. Most colleges will not accept students from unaccredited schools. Parents will not want to move to a town in which there is an unaccredited high school.
4. Aggressively participate in long-range planning. Bonds are reactive solutions when planning does not take place and when resources are not applied as they are needed.