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Barrett was appointed Executive Principal February 20 to lead East High into its transition into an admission-by-application-only optional (magnet) school using the transportation industry as a focus for a science, technology, engineering, and math oriented curriculum, or T-STEM for short.
The conversion will take place over the next four years, with the ninth graders starting in August, 2017, being the first group of all optional students.
If Barrett puts the numbers aside and looks at people, what does she see?
When I was talking to two young ladies [at East High] yesterday, they don't know who I am.
Alumnus Chas Mc Vean ('61) was the impetus and, for the most part, the money behind that effort, which continues to this day.
Christ United Methodist Church has been involved in supporting and encouraging athletics at East.
For almost a decade and a half the Peer Power Foundation, originally known as The Greater East High Foundation, has held after school tutoring sessions and other academic enrichment opportunities for students without cost to them.
(For those who are more familiar with the ACT before 1989 when it changed, the 15.7 score is roughly equivalent to a composite ACT score on the old test of 12.
) That's up about a half point from the previous year.
And while the data is scary, while the numbers, we could talk about the graduation rate, the literacy and the math, that doesn't tell the picture," according to Barrett.
The Shelby County School system, of which East High is now a part, often describes itself as "data driven." School districts across the nation are looking at measurements in efforts to determine what is working in the classroom.
Despite these efforts, the academic achievement for the East High student body as a whole has not made significant progress, according to ACT scores.