Wednesday, June 29, 2011


On the heels of the recent departure of Jefferson-Houston principal Kim Graves, ACPS has announced changes in the governance of the school, which will be discussed in two upcoming community meetings regarding the selection of a new principal.
Alexandria City Public Schools Superintendent Morton Sherman has announced that Jefferson-Houston School will be operated by a principal for instruction, assisted by a chief executive officer, with oversight by an alternate governance committee comprised of school leadership, PTA representatives and central office staff. This committee will provide support and guidance needed to assist the principal in his or her quest to improve student achievement. The principal for instruction position is being advertised now with a goal of selecting a new principal by late July.

Two community meetings will be held to answer questions about the search for a new principal and about the new governance structure. The first meeting will be held from 7 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, June 30, in the school library, 1501 Cameron St., Alexandria. A second meeting will be held at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, July 12, also in the school library. Read more at
It also appears that assistant principal Melissa Deak has left and a new assistant principal, Helena Payne, has been brought in from Hammond Middle School (

The question for skeptical parents and community residents is whether these changes reflect a genuine intent to bootstrap the school into better performance or are simply churning exercises. Given that test scores are typically released in September, do school officials know something we don't about the spring's test results?