How Fast Can Kriner Cash Turn Memphis Schools Around? 

How soon can Memphis expect to see improvements in the Memphis City Schools under new superintendent Dr. Kriner Cash?

Test results coming out of the Washington D.C. public schools, a system that is smaller but demographically similar to Memphis, show significant gains in the first year under new superintendent Michelle Rhee.

The Washington Post reported this week that D.C. schools had an 11 percent gain in math proficiency for elementary students and an 8 percent gain in reading scores. Schools making adequate yearly progress under the federal No Child Left Behind law rose from 31 to 47.

Rhee, who spoke at a panel on education in Memphis earlier this year, took charge of the D.C. schools in June of 2007. She is an alumnus of the Teach For America program, which began placing corps members in Memphis City Schools two years ago.

Rhee takes a no-excuses approach and works closely with Washington D.C. mayor Adrian Fenty. She and Fenty, who also participated in the Memphis panel, said a close relationship between the mayor and superintendent is essential to improving public school performance.

Brad Leon, executive director of Teach For America in Memphis, said similar results could be achieved in Memphis with the right leadership.

"Michelle Rhee walked into a district with a lot of great human capital," Leon said. "We have an incoming corps there of 300 and more than 700 alumni, and more than 10 percent of principals in D.C. are TFA alumni. We're certainly not the only source of great leadership, but she has a lot to work with."

Memphis will have about 100 TFA corps members and 30 alumni this year.

Cash, who came to Memphis from the Miami/Dade County public schools, appears to be establishing a good relationship with Herenton, who is a former superintendent. They held a joint appearance at City Hall this week and staged a friendly free-throw shooting competition at Ridgeway High School on Friday.

Favorite

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Blogs

Beyond the Arc

Celtics 102, Grizzlies 93: Five Thoughts

Tiger Blue

Louisville 81, Tigers 72

Film/TV/Etc. Blog

Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Beyond the Arc

THE GRIZZLIES WON A BASKETBALL GAME

News Blog

Public Picks Zoo Parking Lot Plan

Politics Beat Blog

Left Activists Intrude on Meeting of Shelby County Democrats

Politics Beat Blog

GOP Figure Bill Giannini Killed in Car Crash

Politics Beat Blog

Mackler Out of Senate Race, Yields to Bredesen

Beyond the Arc

The Hustle Dispatch: Week 6

News Blog

Cooper-Young Nears Historical Landmark Status

ADVERTISEMENT

More by John Branston

  • Pyramid History 101

    Bass Pro should acknowledge the big pointy building’s backstory.
    • May 14, 2015
  • Let it Be

    What to do about the Fairgrounds? How about nothing?
    • Jan 29, 2015
  • Let’s Go, Shelby County Schools!

    Some suggestions for how the new Shelby County Schools system can hold its own in the years to come.
    • Aug 14, 2014
  • More »

Readers also liked…

ADVERTISEMENT
© 1996-2017

Contemporary Media
460 Tennessee Street, 2nd Floor | Memphis, TN 38103
Visit our other sites: Memphis Magazine | Memphis Parent | Inside Memphis Business
Powered by Foundation