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Central Falls schools chief discusses mediations

May 14, 2010

Central Falls Superintendent Fran Gallo sees only two options for bringing rapid improvement to Central Falls High School.

“Either we get new staff,” she says, “or we need a lot of operational flexibility.”

Gallo made national waves early this year when she fired the entire faculty of Central Falls High School. The move came under a state policy aimed at schools with a history of low test scores. Gallo selected a “turnaround model” that allows no more than half of the teachers to be re-hired for the fall term.

The Central Falls Teachers’ Union has challenged the firings in federal court and is currently in talks with school district officials about adopting a model that would allow teachers to keep their jobs.

Gallo says she can only agree to bring all the teachers back if the union agrees to give school leaders complete freedom to make whatever changes they feel are needed at the school.

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