Nonprofit takes over high school turnaround
In the latest push of a pioneering attempt to revive failing schools, Atlanta Public Schools turned over Carver High School to outsiders who restructured it and hired new teachers.
APS handed over Carver operations this year to the nonprofit Purpose Built Schools Atlanta, a spin-off of the well-regarded Drew Charter School. Six Atlanta schools will be run by three charter-related groups when the district’s outsourcing plan is fully implemented by 2019.
The system hired outside groups because APS couldn’t overhaul all of its troubled schools on its own, officials said. The decision came amid a looming threat that the state could take over the worst performing schools.
It’s too early to know if the highstakes bet will pay off. But supporters point to promising signs that the wager, which involves millions of dollars and a couple of thousand students from poor neighborhoods, will be worthwhile. Superintendent Meria Carstarphen said she’s pleased with how contractors have performed in the first two years but cautions there’s not enough information “to take a victory lap, or to throw in a towel.”