Lubbock ISD must make changes to Dunbar Prep or close the school

Lubbock ISD must make changes to Dunbar Prep or close the school

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

By Texas Education Agency standards, Dunbar College Preparatory Academy in East Lubbock is a failing school and has been for the last five years.

The TEA is now forcing Lubbock ISD to take action. The district has three options: let the state take over the district, repurpose Dunbar Prep or close the only middle school in East Lubbock.

"Closing the school is a non-negotiable," said Superintendent Kathy Rollo. 

Rollo said despite the school not meeting standards for half a decade, the road to being back in the state's good graces is not that long.

"As far as the instructional things that you see happening in the school, there are a lot of really good things," she said. "The teachers are providing some very engaging learning opportunities for our students and we've seen double digit gains across the board in 6th, 7th and 8th grade in all content areas, but it just wasn't enough."

Dunbar scored "improvement required" in all areas of the TEA's Accountability Ratings.

"They scored a 58 and they have to have a 60," she said.

To get the school over the hump, Cosby Morton Jr, an East Lubbock activist, said it's going to take a community effort.

"We as citizens, we as people that live in this community have to go hand in hand with the actual LISD school board, and the hierarchy that runs the school system and the teachers," Morton said. "It's up to us. It's not completely on LISD."

Over the last few months the district has held meetings with the community to develop a re-purposing plan.

"We're working with the commissioner, we're going to be working on some stuff with him and hopefully, we're very hopeful we'll be able to keep it open as a 6th, 7th, and 8th and then put some of those social and emotional learning needs in place," Rollo said. 

Morton said it is critical to keep Dunbar open for the East side.

"The district is trying to do, you know, and it may not work but at this point anything is on the table and we need to try to keep the school open," he said.

The district is appealing its rating to the TEA. If successful the rating could change to "passing."

Rollo said the repurposing plan will be submitted in the next few months.

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