Low performing schools will add one hour to the classroom

Posted at 7:58 PM, Jul 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-20 02:58:50-04

Poor test scores mean thousands of kids will be spending extra time in the classroom. Forty Hillsborough County schools ranked among the lowest in the state.

Madeline Michaels starts pre-k in the next few weeks. She will attend the same elementary school as her two older brothers. One of them, Cade Hunter said he got a great education at Cleveland Elementary. He said it helped prepare him for tougher high school courses.

"When I went there, it was a really good school," said Hunter.

But now Cleveland joins 39 other schools in Hillsborough County as poor performing schools. The state assessment tests were based on reading scores. Hunter's mom is also surprised at Cleveland's ranking.

"I really can not believe it," said Jennifer Michael.

But the entire family is on board with what this ranking means.

All students attending the low-ranking schools will spend one extra hour in the classroom. Teachers will use that time for reading comprehension, which will help with other subjects. Educators said the method worked in the past, citing last year when most of the poor performing schools came off the list after adding the extra hour.
"If an extra hour is what it takes, sure, I'll do it if it helps out," said Michael.
Bus schedules will also change to accommodate the extra hour of school, and all of it comes at a price estimated to total around six million dollars. While that's a hefty price tag for a district still dealing with budget cuts, Michael feels it's a price everyone should be willing to pay.?

"It paves the path for the future for everyone, not just for them, but for everyone around," said Michael.