You can now read 10 articles in a month for free on BostonGlobe.com. Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

The Boston Globe

Editorial

editorial

More Boston schools need flexible ‘turnaround’ rules

Mayor Menino may appear to be using his 2013 legislative agenda to pick an unnecessary fight with the city’s teachers’ union. But the mayor, in calling for a dramatic increase in the number of schools with flexible staffing rules, is making a strong statement by choosing school improvement over labor peace.

State law already grants widespread powers to school districts to sidestep existing teacher contracts at so-called “turnaround schools,’’ a euphemism for the roughly 40 lowest-performing schools in the state. But the difference between the turnaround schools — 12 in Boston alone — and the next-lowest performance level based on standardized test scores is often marginal. There are 48 of these “Level 3’’ schools, which have weak MCAS scores, in Boston. And Menino rightly assumes that many of them would benefit significantly from the imposition of a longer school day, staff shake-ups, alterations to the curriculum, merit pay for teaching staffs, and other measures allowed under state law for turnaround schools.

Loading comments...

You have reached the limit of 10 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week