February 12th, 2009 | by BETH SLOVIC News | Posted In: CLEAN UP, Schools

Madison High School Abandons "Small School" Reform


Madison High School in Northeast Portland was converted into three "small schools" under Superintendent Vicki Phillips in 2006.

Now, three years later at the recommendation of teachers, it's abandoning the Gates Foundation-funded reform and returning to a traditional model, the comprehensive school. The revamp to the revamp means students will no longer be assigned to different academies within Madison, a model that limited what classes they could take. (The school has fewer than 1,000 teen-agers.)

"It's hard to speak for everyone," Madison student Joe Scorse said last June. "But most of the kids don't like the small communities."

The change -- which will shave two administrative positions from the staff -- comes as PPS Superintendent Carole Smith continues the district's high school redesign.(PDF)

The change was announced to students this month at an assembly, and the news was greeted with cheers. (The photo below is of Madison students from June.)

Madison Protest
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