NBHS to Lose Accreditation?

There are two postings from last week over at NB Blogs that deserve more attention, excerpted below:

  • New Britain High School on Probation – June 18
  • McCarthy said that several months ago, the district was notified that as a result of an intensive four-day visit by NEASC in the fall, New Britain High School was being put on probation – unless school officials could argue that the results were wrong.

    “They have chosen not to contest the findings,” he said. “They agreed the findings were accurate.”

  • Shhhhh… – June 20
  • It is unbelievable that city officials are hushing up the fact that New Britain High School’s accreditation is in jeopardy – and apparently, the newspapers and other media are letting them.

    In case anyone’s unsure, losing accreditation is a huge, huge deal, and a huge, huge black eye to the city. Yet officials are ignoring the fact that New Britain High School may lose its accreditation – which basically means that the education students got there, well, won’t really count.

    Apparently, that’s no big deal to officials, who have been able to avoid the issue by keeping it from parents, and now, refusing to respond to repeated calls and questions from this blog about the fact that the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC) is meeting Sunday to discuss the school’s probation.

There really does seem to be a media blackout on this story. I did a cursory search of the websites for The New Britain Herald, The Hartford Courant, NBC30, WTNH, WFSB, and Fox61, and I can’t find it anywhere except over at NB Blogs.

I didn’t attend New Britain public schools so I have no comment on their quality or efficacy, but I do think it’s a little strange that in a city this size that there is only one high school, that it is possibly losing its accreditation, and that NOBODY SEEMS TO BE TALKING ABOUT IT. This isn’t just bad for the students, it’s bad for the teachers and staff at NBHS too, not to mention the city of New Britain.

4 Responses to “NBHS to Lose Accreditation?”

  1. Genghis Conn

    I always thought it was strange for a city of 75,000 to have only one high school, too. Huge high schools don’t equal quality education. Kids get lost. In Enfield (pop. 45,000) we have two high schools, and it works a lot better.

    I, too, would have thought this would be a bigger story than it is. Remember when the same happened to Hartford Public? That was a big story. Why isn’t this?

  2. patrick thibodeau

    There is an update on the nbblogs site by Elisa, who reports that the probation status was voted on June 24th.

  3. Peter Kochol

    I’m not quite sure how this notion of a conspiracy to cover-up the NEASC report on NBHS got legs but as soon as the report was made public it was sent to the Mayor and the entire Common Council. The HS principal Michael Foran as is required by NEASC is preparing an action plan to address the reports findings that place the accreditation of the HS in danger. Granted we’ll be robbing Peter to pay Paul but, Superintendent Kurtz and the Board have already committed to providing resources to the HS to ensure that there is no loss of accreditation. It must be noted that there were many positive things about NBHS cited in the report.

  4. Peter Kochol

    The issue of resources for public education in New Britain is not a new one and is the issue that looms behind the NEASC findings. The School district did not contest the findings because we are acutely aware of the areas where we fall short and yet year in and year out are forced to run the district with budget allocations from the city that don’t meet the increases in non-discretionary spending. This erodes services and forces the BOE into making budgeting decisions with a triage type of mind set. This year the HS gets the resources because they need it most.

    The cause of this is partly due to the fact that democrats on the council are locked into a dynamic of trying to out tax cut the republican Mayor who, it must be remembered, a few year ago provided for a $500,000 increase to the BOE’s budget which at that time was around $95 million– a school district of 10,000 students and 1,300 staff in 14 schools. The other cause is that the State continues to fund education through the property tax which for cities like New Britain does not work since adequate revenues can not be generated to keep pace with rising costs. This year began with a great deal of optimism around this issue but as we all know ultimately crashed and burned in the “historic” budget negotiation.