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Sousa Middle School Seen As Positive DCPS Example

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DCPS interim Chancellor Kaya Henderson, D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray and State Superintendent Hosanna Mahaley.
Kavitha Cardoza
DCPS interim Chancellor Kaya Henderson, D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray and State Superintendent Hosanna Mahaley.

D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray and interim Chancellor Kaya Henderson kicked off a back to school event. And Gray calls improvements at Sousa Middle School in Southeast D.C. an example of education reform he'd like to see District-wide.

Henderson calls Sousa Middle School an example of DCPS at it's best. She says students have a renovated building, a principal she calls "fantabulous" and in three years, "We've been able to increase reading scores by 30 percent and increase math scores by 18 percent."

Student Quentin Datcher, 12, says he has new teachers trying new methods of teaching and giving them more challenging coursework. Students have extra tutoring and Saturday classes. And he asks Gray a question everyone concerned with education reform is asking:

"Sousa has become one of the more best schools in the District. I just want to know how will you take what Sousa has done and give it to other schools?"

Gray says it's all about empowering the principal and teachers to make needed changes.

"Over time, what we've seen is a huge gap between the control over education and the responsibility, if you will," he says.

Gray still needs to name a permanent chancellor for D.C. Public Schools.

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