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Happy Thursday and welcome to Rhode Map, your daily guide to everything happening in the Ocean State. I’m Dan McGowan and I now think Ed Cooley should be president and governor and mayor. Follow me on Twitter @DanMcGowan or send tips to Dan.McGowan@globe.com.
A Providence charter school that has for years faced pressure from the state to improve student outcomes has opted to close its doors at the end of the school year.
The Academy for Career Exploration, which was one of Rhode Island’s first charter schools when it opened in 1997 as the Textron Chamber of Commerce Academy, informed the state Department of Education last month that it would close rather than craft a reform plan that might have kept it open.
The high school serves more than 200 students, but Education Commissioner Angélica Infante-Green had reservations about extending its charter because of low performance, including a zero percent proficiency rate in math. Nearly 38 percent of students were considered chronically absent last school year.
"This decision has not been made lightly, and ACE’s Board of Directors believes that it is in the best interest of ACE’s students and faculty to act now to ensure that each ACE family, student, and faculty member has the best opportunity to consider and settle their respective situation for the 2020-2021 school year and beyond,” board chairman Joe Devine wrote in a letter to Infante-Green.
The closure of ACE will likely send a message to other struggling charter schools.
While opponents of charters have long criticized state leaders for placing too much of a focus on struggling traditional public schools, the reality is that the Department of Education has tried to address poor performing charters in the past.
In 2012, then-commissioner Deborah Gist recommended that ACE’s charter not be renewed because of poor math scores, but she was overruled by the state’s education board.
NEED TO KNOW
Rhode Map wants to hear from you. If you've got a scoop or a link to an interesting news story in Rhode Island, e-mail us at RInews@globe.com.
- The latest on the coronavirus: Around 200 people in Rhode Island who have come into contact with people who have tested positive for the disease have been asked to quarantine themselves at home, according to the state health department.
- Good one from Ed Fitzpatrick: A Rhode Island Supreme Court justice who earns more than $200,000 a year is using a taxpayer-funded insurance policy to fight a $200 fine from the state Ethics Commission.
- The Globe’s editorial board calls for Democrats to makes changes to their “awful” presidential nominating process.
- Columnist Yvonne Abraham writes that US Senator Elizabeth Warren has been the best candidate by almost every measure, but “it’s often the case that better than isn’t good enough when you’re a woman.”
- Bryant University has a new president. Welcome, Ross Gittell.
- Get ready for Kelly’s Roast Beef to come to Providence.
WHAT'S ON TAP TODAY
Each day, Rhode Map offers a cheat sheet breaking down what's happening in Rhode Island. Have an idea? E-mail us at RInews@globe.com.
- State health department officials are expected to hold another press conference on the coronavirus this morning. We’ll have full coverage.
- Lieutenant Governor Dan McKee has a big fund-raising event tonight where some thought he might launch his campaign for governor, although it sounds like a formal announcement isn’t coming anytime soon.
- A commission that is tasked with making recommendations for encouraging more minorities to become teachers meets today at the State House.
- The Northeast Aquatic Biologists Conference continues today in Newport.
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Thanks for reading. Send comments and suggestions to email@example.com, or follow me on Twitter @DanMcGowan. See you tomorrow.
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Dan McGowan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at @danmcgowan.