Forget questions and answers, this was a pep rally.
Students, teachers, and parents stood together trying to stop their school from being taken over by the state’s new Achievement School District.
The Achievement School District takes control of schools where kids test lowest in the state. They put in new rules, regulations, and many times new teachers.
They could barely get in the door at Southside Middle.
“They’re coming in here trying to get us to drink the Kool-aid,” said one man. “We don’t need to drink the Kool-aid, come on lets go outside.”
Parents walked out, ending the meeting in no time.
Teachers thanked parents and insisted students are already testing better here and teachers are a level five, the highest score in the state.
“We were told if we kept working hard we’d come off the list that’s not what happened,” said Melissa Jamison.
That’s because, long-term, the numbers are still low.
Through all this, leaders from the new district kept their cool.
“They don’t have the full story, and they heard something through grapevine. It’s pretty common to have that energy in the room,” said Elliot Smalley, who is with the Achievement School District.
He may be right, literally two parents, skipped the pep rally and were glad they did.
“Prior to this meeting, the message wasn’t clear on why the meeting was being held, staying after did help me,” said parent Isaiah May.