Pittsburgh Public Schools stands in the midst of a transformational period that seeks significant improvement in our district through thoughtful, strategic initiatives aimed at addressing achievement disparities among our students. To reach this goal, we have implemented fundamental structural changes to the way we approach education. As with any effort requiring change, the road has not always been easy—but most worthwhile endeavors rarely are.
Today, PPS offers 21 magnet programs that let students focus their interests, and 15 career/technical education programs give students a head start on their careers. The lottery application period for the 2019-20 school year is going on now through Nov. 30.
Some other highlights worth noting include:
Strategic partnerships: Corporate and community partners have enhanced educational opportunities for PPS students, such as an $11,000 donation of bicycle desks to elementary-age children at Pittsburgh Weil by UnitedHealthcare in October and Sprint’s 1Million Project, which gave 630 high school students a free mobile device and free Wi-Fi service.
Achievement gaps: We have made progress in the achievement gap for African American students, more of whom are graduating from high school. More third-grade students are reading at grade level today compared to three years ago. With the introduction of positive behavior interventions and supports and restorative practices, suspension rates are down 35 percent compared to three years ago.
Greater transparency: the State of the District report (pghschools.org/stateofthedistrict) marks the first time PPS has shared a report that includes not only district-level results, but also graduation rates, detailed suspension information, and budget information.
Our administration, board, principals, teachers, and school staff continue our focus on providing the best possible education for every student. While we take pride in what we have accomplished to date, we also acknowledge the work to come while eagerly anticipating the milestones ahead.
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