For Immediate Release - October 15, 2013

GOVERNOR PATRICK MEETS WITH UK SECRETARY OF STATE FOR EDUCATION TO DISCUSS BEST PRACTICES

BOSTON – Tuesday, October 15, 2013 – Governor Deval Patrick today met with the United Kingdom’s Secretary of State for Education, the Right Honourable Michael Gove, to discuss Massachusetts’ education policy and reforms and share best practices. Massachusetts students lead the nation in student achievement and are at the top of the world in math and science.

“It is my pleasure to welcome Secretary of State for Education, Michael Gove, to Massachusetts and look forward to continuing to work together on improving outcomes for all of our students,” said Governor Patrick.

In September, Governor Patrick announced the results of the 2013 MCAS exams. Fourteen schools named underperforming in 2010 are now exiting Level 4 after having successfully met their individual measurable, annual goals over the past three years by increasing student achievement and showing significant progress in implementing conditions at the school and district level for continuing to accelerate improvement.

The state's landmark Achievement Gap Act of 2010 provided the necessary framework and tools in the state's most persistently low performing schools to support the accelerated improvement of student achievement and a high-functioning learning environment for students within three years. Level 4 schools are both low performing on the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS) over a four-year period and not showing signs of substantial improvement over that time. Schools designated as Level 4 must develop a turnaround plan for the school and are eligible to receive federal School Redesign Grant funds.

“I'm delighted to meet Governor Patrick and learn about what he is doing in Massachusetts," said Secretary of State for Education Gove. "It's such a high performing state there is a lot we can learn from its governor and its schools. We've made some major changes in England and I hope our experiences will also help those fighting for higher standards in the U.S."

While in Massachusetts, the Secretary of State for Education will visit three Boston schools including Orchard Gardens, UP Academy South Boston and Roxbury Prep Charter School. The Governor and Secretary were joined in today’s meeting British Consul General Susie Kitchens, UK Minister of State for Enterprise and Skills Matthew Hancock, Massachusetts Secretary of Education Matthew Malone, Boston Public Schools Interim Superintendent John McDonough and Orchard Gardens Principal Andrew Bott.

In England, Secretary Gove has introduced a far ranging set of reforms including introducing a new, more rigorous curriculum, allowing teachers to set up free schools (the equivalent of charter schools) and giving all principals greater freedom to lengthen the school day and offering incentive pay for teachers.

 

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