Albany, NY (WBEN) As the deadline neared, the state education department and Buffalo Public Schools reach a deal on a turnaround plan for East and Lafayette High Schools as well as Best and Highgate Heights schools.
"The devil is in the details when applying it when school starts," says Regent Bob Bennett. "In this model of turnaround, Johns Hopkins signs a contract with the school board and they become the superintendent of that school. They run the school and progress reports have to be made by Johns Hopkins and that's spelled out in the contract."
Johns Hopkins representatives were at the meeting, and Bennett says it's unlikely a deal would have been reached if not for them.
The state could have de-certified East and Lafayette and closed them down if no turnaround deal was reached by today.
This is a statement from Jonathan Burman of the state education department:
"Department officials met today with members of the Buffalo Public Schools administrative team and the Johns Hopkins Talent Development Team to complete the various contracts, BOCES MOUs and required plans for East, Lafayette, BEST and School 80 EPO management structures. The Department has provided extensive technical assistance on these documents over the past month. By day's end, the majority of required plans and documents were in acceptable condition with Board president signatures, and additional student performance metrics remaining to be completed. The latter do not require substantive changes. Commissioner King's approval of these plans is still required. The Department is pleased with the progress of today's meeting but remains concerned about effective implementation given the efforts required to complete these plans."