Task force on middle schools given a grade of 'incomplete' Too many issues left unaddressed, board says

June 23, 1996|By Andrea F. Siegel | Andrea F. Siegel,SUN STAFF

School officials are telling a task force on middle schools that the assignment it turned in is incomplete.

The 35-member committee, which made the controversial recommendation to eliminate general music and restrict other electives, was told last week to continue its study of curriculum, scheduling and teacher time.

"I am going to force them to go back and come up with an agreement," said Superintendent Carol S. Parham after Thursday night's school board workshop on middle school improvements.

The three school board members at the workshop said there were too many unanswered questions and unaddressed issues in the task force's majority and minority reports.

School officials did praise portions of the majority report, which called for creation of remedial reading programs in the county's 17 middle schools.

The demand for additional study was a small victory for the 11-member minority, which claimed the key issue of why eighth-graders are doing poor academic work was not addressed.

The group will have to work over the summer so that the board can decide next winter what changes need to be reflected in the 1997-1998 budget. There won't be public forums on the reports until after another school board workshop.

Michael J. McNelly cautioned the committee to add another consideration -- to "come up with a plan that we can realistically afford."

The majority recommendations carried a $2.7 million price tag.

Pub Date: 6/23/96

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