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MARKETPLACE:  Auto | Jobs | People Search | Personals | Travel | Yellow Pages  February 24, 2005
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Hope High School avoids takeover, but will get special master
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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) -- Hope High School will avoid a state takeover, but will get an independent master to help guide its operations, the state Education Commissioner said Friday.

Commissioner Peter McWalters ordered that Hope continue to operate as three small, autonomous learning communities within the auspices of the Providence School Department, but be accountable to a so-called �special master,� who will ensure implementation of a detailed plan to improve the school.

The struggling high school has been subject of debate, as students, teachers and local and state officials discuss what to raise test scores and address deficiencies.

Last year, McWalters asked the school to prove why the state shouldn�t take it over. Under his authority, McWalters could have taken the school under state control or ordered the school to close.

�Starting next September, I expect a dramatically better educational experience for the students at Hope High School,� McWalters said.

Mayor David Cicilline said he is grateful for the state�s attention to school reform, but said the Carcieri administration falls short in making the necessary changes to actually make better schools. He said the system of school funding, which relies heavily on property taxes, needs to be changed.

�The budget is the single most effective weapon in the governor�s arsenal for improving education ... but it is effectively silent on the subject,� Cicilline said.

Hope has three learning communities known as Information Technology, Leadership, and Arts.

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