WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — Things are still looking bleak for Kirby Junior High as a progress report made to Wichita Falls Independent School District School Board members shows some not-very-promising numbers when it comes to beginning and end-of-the-year testing.
Kirby has been on the improvement required rating, and if the school doesn’t pass above an overall F rating, it could be closed, or the state could take over the school board indefinitely.
During a presentation, Kirby Junior High Principal Alston Calliste said they’re putting most of their focus on getting students to show up to school in the first place, while also offering incentives for those students meeting or passing their Rasch unit or “RIT” scores.
Calliste said they have created a lunch D-hall program that will allow students who get in trouble to be punished by sitting in lunch D-hall as opposed to sending them to I.S.S. where they will be secluded with a lower ability to be fully educated. Kirby Kash was also created to help motivate students to do better in school by giving them fake money they can use to purchase snack items.
But Superintendent Dr. Donny Lee and other school board members said more has to be done.
“There hasn’t been enough progress made from fall to spring. So if the numbers hold true and the map data is similar to what the STAAR data will look like, then the indications are that enough students will not pass the STAAR test in reading, math, science, and social studies in order to get out of improvement rating,” Lee said.
Calliste said they’ve also created mentorship programs, which allow mentors from different churches and organizations to meet with troubled students one on one and discuss ways to do better in school.
Lee said they should have more insight on whether or not the school will pass in May, but said the final results should be known around August.
He said if the school does have to shut down, the state would give the district a one-year planning period, and if the state takes over the school board, that would go into effect immediately.