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Education

Durant lauds TPS successes in Rotary talk

Chief credits new school model for improvements

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Romules Durant, superintendent of Toledo Public Schools.

The Blade/Dave Zapotosky
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Toledo Public Schools Superintendent Romules Durant touted the district’‍s improvements at the Rotary Club of Toledo meeting Monday.

Mr. Durant credited the district’s transition from a middle-school model to a K-8 model with a 60 percent to 80 percent decrease in suspension rates for sixth through eighth graders. He said the new model emphasizes accountability and provides consistency because students remain in the same building with teachers they have had for years.

Rotarian Brad Rubini and his wife, Julie, were particularly happy with Mr. Durant’‍s comments on TPS internship programs.

“True teaching and learning doesn’t happen until the career industry gets involved,” Mr. Durant said. He described a multimedia program at Scott High School, in which students can participate in internships and shadowing programs with businesses such as Channel 11, Buckeye CableSystem, Clear Channel Communications, and more.

Mr. and Mrs. Rubini are the founders of Claire’‍s Day, a children’s book festival that recognizes children for improvement in reading skills.

“Under Romules, over 300 children from TPS were nominated for awards,” Mrs. Rubini said.

Mr. Durant also described successes of the TPS transformation plan for Rotarians.

He mentioned a 300 percent increase in participation in TPS free-breakfast programs. He boasted the implementation of credit-recovery programs, in which children who fail a course can take the same course online to receive credit for the class and stay on track. TPS also now has distance-learning programs that allow students to participate in classes not offered at their own schools via Blackboard software and labs.

Mr. Durant was proud of the transformation plan successes and said he looks to improvements on the horizon with another district program. With education, he said, “If you truly want a great rate return, it starts in early childhood development.”

Contact Kathleen Ashcraft at: kashcraft@theblade.com or 419-724-6050.

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