Members of the Illinois State Board of Education took a field trip Wednesday to see whether a School Improvement Grant is turning things around at a troubled school. Lanphier High School in Springfield is one of 27 schools across the state in the program, designated for schools in need of Turnaround, Restart, Transformation, or School Closure, in the words of the U. S. Department of Education. In Lanphier’s case, it’s a program of transformation.
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“Students, when they graduated last year, were thanking us. They felt like they had a hard time coming to school” before the transformation started, said principal Artie Doss. “They didn’t have the relationship with their teachers, or the students weren’t respectful, and they didn’t have the relationship with the peers, but how they were able to graduate and go on to college.”
Students – including a highly-recruited basketball player and the student government president – told board members of the increased expectations placed on them since the improvement program began.