RSD to talk schools’ future

The Recovery School District is holding a series of meetings during the next month to let parents of students at the seven schools it runs in north Baton Rouge hear about and participate in the future of their schools.

RSD announced the meetings Friday, saying parents are “invited to learn more about the organization’s strategies to create high-quality school options” next school year and in future years among the seven schools, which RSD is collectively calling the Baton Rouge Achievement Zone.

In a news release, RSD Superintendent Patrick Dobard said his staff is seeking feedback from parents on their priorities when it comes to this school transformation, which he said is happening now. Dobard said he wants parents to be a part of the entire transformation process.

“The RSD is not here to make changes to community; we are here to make changes with community. This will lead to successful transformation of public schools in the parish,” Dobard said.

The seven schools were formerly operated by the East Baton Rouge Parish school system and taken over for chronic, low academic performance. Six of them were initially run as charter schools, but those charters were ended in 2011 and 2012, at which time the state hired new principals and teachers. Istrouma High was taken over in summer 2012, making it the seventh RSD school in north Baton Rouge.

A 1-year-old nonprofit, New School For Baton Rouge, has been trying to recruit high quality charter management groups to assume control of one or more RSD schools, starting in fall 2014.

East Baton Rouge Parish Superintendent Bernard Taylor has been trying to regain control of one or more schools as well, but has so far been unsuccessful.

Prescott Middle students were moved last summer to Istrouma High, and its old campus has been fenced off and used for administrative offices. Earlier this month, a parent group connected with the parish school system, One Community, One School District, began floating an online petition seeking Prescott’s return.

Here is the schedule of parent meetings for the seven RSD schools:

Dalton Elementary, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesday.

Lanier Elementary, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday.

Glen Oaks Middle, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. April 24.

Crestworth Middle, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. April 25.

Capitol High, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. May 1.

Istrouma High, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. May 2.

Prescott Middle, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. May 16 (at Istrouma High campus).