Here’s one way to motivate students to come to class: Promise them a rapper as their new principal (for a day).
Student absenteeism is alarmingly high in Baltimore City schools, and now 61 principals — almost one third of all principals in the system — are facing disciplinary action. They’re being put on performance improvement plans, which the Baltimore Sun reports “historically have been used as punitive measures that can be precursors to dismissal.”
Baltimore schools interim CEO Tisha Edwards blames the principals for not “owning” their “leadership role” by not doing more to reach out to families and make sure students make it to school.
Baltimore City schools have got a suspension problem — over 10,000 suspensions a year, district-wide. And that’s particularly an issue when you look at the link between out-of-school suspensions and test scores. On the 2012 Maryland School Assessments, “students who attended school regularly scored 22 percentage points higher in math and 17 percentage points higher in reading.”