Superintendent apologizes for communication breakdown

Superintendent apologizes for communication breakdown
Morton Sherman (File photo)

Amid fears the district plans to do away with the adult education program, Superintendent Morton Sherman apologized for not communicating effectively with the community.

“If we didn’t communicate well, I’m sorry,” Sherman told residents at Thursday’s school board meeting. “But at the end of the day, the lesson that I think we all need to take is that this board, this superintendent and this administration works for one cause only, which is the improvement of our education for our children, for our young adults and for our adult community. And we must with candor recognize that we have not done that well for all of our students in the past.”

Sherman linked proposed changes to the district’s adult education program with the persistently low-achieving designation T.C. Williams received from state and federal officials. Minority students consistently have underperformed compared to their white counterparts, the superintendent said, and have drastically higher drop-out rates.

The district is focusing on streamlining the high school equivalency program, expanding the English language learner classes and giving 15- to 22-year-old students a pathway to standard or advanced diplomas outside of the high school, Sherman said.

Education officials outlined their proposal for the school board Thursday, though the plan will need tweaking in the weeks and month ahead, according to Sherman.

“We need to change what we do as a school division to support those students,” he said.