Six Memphis Schools Added to State Turn-Around Effort

The state will take control of six more schools in Memphis, and try to turn them around after years of dismal test scores. The move doubles the number of schools in Tennessee’s Achievement School District.

The ASD aims to take schools steadily ranked in the state’s worst 5 percent, and make them among the best in just a few years. In Metro a half dozen schools were eligible, along with about 70 in Memphis – all with lots of poor students.

“This is a very tough scenario across Memphis, what we’re seeing.”

Anthony Anderson runs a charter school in the Frayser area. Today state officials announced they’ll turn several schools nearby into charters. Anderson says they’ll face complex challenges, because the area struggles with crime, debt, unemployment and teen pregnancy. Lots of single parents there dropped out of school themselves.

“Education is not the focal point for many of the households in the Frayser area – That is changing.”

Among the operators taking on Memphis schools is KIPP, which also runs charters in Metro.

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