Education A State Capitals Roundup

Overseer Says R.I. School Still in Need of Improvement

By Jeff Archer — December 12, 2006 1 min read

The “special master” appointed to oversee the state-ordered overhaul of a Rhode Island high school has said that significant progress has been made at the school, but that student attendance, facilities, and other matters are still problems.

Released in a report last week, the assessment is the last by Nicholas C. Donohue, a former state schools chief in New Hampshire, who was named 18 months ago to monitor implementation of major changes at Hope High School, in the 28,000-student Providence district.

Rhode Island Commissioner of Education Peter J. McWalters gave Mr. Donohue the charge after ordering a wide-ranging restructuring at the school to create small learning communities and more-personalized instruction. (“R.I. State Commissioner Imposes Plan of Action on Providence School,” Feb. 16, 2005.)

Mr. Donohue left the post last month to become the president and chief executive officer of the Nellie Mae Education Foundation, in Quincy, Mass.

The Rhode Island Department of Education will continue to oversee the redesign of Hope High, though not with a special master, Mr. McWalters said.

A version of this article appeared in the December 13, 2006 edition of Education Week