04/13/06 — State makes official visit to Goldsboro High

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State makes official visit to Goldsboro High

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on April 13, 2006 1:50 PM

State officials are visiting Goldsboro High School today as part of a previously scheduled visit to assess the needs of the state's low-performing schools.

Wayne County Schools officials said the visit is not related to a judge's recent ruling that identified the school as one of 19 in the state that could be closed in the fall unless improvements are made.

In a 17-page letter from Judge Howard Manning Jr. on March 3, Goldsboro High was among the schools required to begin reform plans or face closure. The letter, sent to state and local school officials, ordered sweeping changes be made to those schools, including possible replacement of principals.

Olivia Pierce, executive director for community relations with Wayne County Public Schools, said today's visit from the Department of Public Instruction had been scheduled months ago as part of the state's effort to work with low performing schools.

"Earlier in the year, they sent a letter that sometime during the year they would make the site visit," she said. "They are visiting high schools throughout the state that were identified as low-performing. It's more a case of, how can we help you and to help monitor the school improvement plan."

Mrs. Pierce said that Dr. Janice Davis, a deputy superintendent for DPI, and Pat Ashley, state high school improvement coordinator, were scheduled to visit the school. A portion of the time would be spent meeting with Principal Pat Burden to review the school improvement plan, she said.

The state visit, despite appearances, was purely coincidental, Mrs. Pierce said, and was not prompted by recent pronouncements from Judge Manning.

"Not according to the information they sent us; it's just part of the process they have had all year," she said.

Mrs. Pierce said she was uncertain how information acquired from today's visit would be used and whether it could factor into the outcome of the judge's court case on school quality.