Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Dr. Holley/ Lincoln

From "Start a new post":

Anonymous said...
Regina B Holley...

Holley is lather rinse repeat. Wasn't she the principal of Faison? How can that be considered a success?

I forgot administrators/CEO's are held to lower standards than the teachers. Blame the teachers elect the person that ran one of the worse schools in the district.

I don't get it.

May 4, 2011 12:48 AM

Questioner said...
No holley was principal of lincoln very different results.

May 4, 2011 5:32 AM

Kathy Fine said...
Anon 12:48

Dr. Holley was the principal at Lincoln K-8. During her tenure there, she has received accolades from the students, parents, and teachers for her leadership in educating a student body that is predominantly poor. She has won awards at the local and the state level.

She is concerned about the lack of sound educational basis for much of the PPS programming, the often poor implementation strategies and the fact that no one is being held accountable. She worries that too much money is being spent on consultants and PR, money that should be spent in the classroom.

I am still waiting to hear from the many of you that have been keen to the fact that we need a real change in leadership at the board level. We have a chance to get an experienced, articulate and dedicated advocate for our children and our schools, but we can't do it without a real grassroots effort. Please, we need your help. (

May 4, 2011 10:57 AM


Curious George said...

Forgive me if I haven't done the research myself, but could someone answer these questions for me:

1. Has Dr. Holley given her opinion of the RISE teacher evaluation program?

Some say RISE is a valuable evaluation tool. Others say it is very subjective, demoralizing, and harmful.

Why does Dr. Holley say about this?

2. Has Dr. Holley given her opinion of the changing (some say lowering) of academic standards?

For example, what is her opinion of the "50% is passing" rule?

And there is currently discusion in the PPS to make test scores account for less than 50% of a student's grade. Classroom participation, projects, etc. are to be weighed more heavily than tests.

What does Dr. Holley say about this?

3. Has Dr. Holley said anything concrete about improving discipline in the schools? Any real proposals?

Anonymous said...

PDE _ 2009-2010:

Achievement at Lincoln Elementary School, under Regina Holley, was 50% "proficient" in Reading
and 62% "proficient" in Math.

The District average was 54% "proficient" in Reading and 68% "proficient" in Math.

The minimum target for the State of PA was 63% "proficient" in Reading and 54% "proficient" in Math.

Anonymous said...

Slight Revision:

The District average "proficiency" rates for K- 8 schools (versus K-5 as previously stated) were 57% in Reading and 64% in Math.

Lincoln was categorized by PDE as "Making Progress - School Improvement II indicating that Lincoln had NOT made AYP four previous years.

Anonymous said...

Anon 2:55

Thanks for posting the actual numbers for Dr. Holley and showing what an outstanding job that she was doing at Lincoln! With a majority of students/families living in poverty, she was able to come extremely close to the district average!

I might be mistaken, but you seem to have posted this as a dig to the previous post of Dr. Holley's success. But when you compare these scores to schools of similar demographics for students scoring adv/proficient:

Lincoln: math 63% reading 50.4%
Faison: math 40.4% reading 33.4%
king: math 38.6% reading 35.2%
Fort Pitt: math 63% reading 34.6%
Fulton: math 61% reading 33%

I'd say she did pretty well with what she had (which was little in the way of ensuring smaller classrooms, full compliment of support staffing, etc. etc.)

Anonymous said...

I'd recommend going to the A+ site and downloading the 2010 Community report for comparing schools.

In 8th grade scores Lincoln was just below the district average in reading 69.4% vs. 70.9% and above in math 62.2% vs. 58.8%.

Lincoln had 93.1% kids eligible for free/reduced lunch while the district average is 77%.

Look at the bars for 6th-8th grade scores graph in the A+ report -- Lincoln outscores Colfax's Black students (there were no White 8th graders at Lincoln last year:

Here's a comparison of Lincoln kids to the African-American kids at Colfax to the Faison kids (school/population most similar to Lincoln, adjoining neighborhoods, same K-8 in two buildings structure, 91.2% poverty):

6th-8th grade Reading advanced/proficient students:
57.1% Lincoln
52% Colfax
32.5% Faison

6th-8th grade Math
advanced/proficient students:
62.4% Lincoln
40.3% Colfax
27.1% Faison

Look through all the non-magnet 6th-8th grade African-American scores and Lincoln's scores hold up.

Curious George said...

I find it interesting that this forum evidently has a number of cheerleaders for Dr. Holley, yet no one is able (or willing) to answer any of the three questions I posed above.

For what it's worth, I checked to see if I could find the answers myself, but my browser says no such site exists.

Anonymous said... isn't a website ;-D

The school board (to the best of my knowledge) doesn't make policies, particularly at the level of grading. They vote up or down on the bigger picture items that include the topics you mention, and need to know what questions to ask and what to highlight.

However, if they voted up or down on every grade and subject's grading breakdown?!

Anonymous said...

I hate tests. They are are a way for consulting companies to make serious cash. I like people that hate tests too.

Does Holley like tests?

Anonymous said...

"The school board (to the best of my knowledge) doesn't make policies, particularly at the level of grading. They vote up or down on the bigger picture items that include the topics you mention, and need to know what questions to ask and what to highlight.

However, if they voted up or down on every grade and subject's grading breakdown?!

May 6, 2011 11:43 PM"

Are you joking? The ridiculous micro~Management and over lapping of managerial Ineptitude would be considered humorous if it did not cost everyone money, respect and just trying to be a decent person.

PPS is stripping it away. If you are not in Allderdice, you are Rodney Dangerfield. You get no respect.

Anonymous said...

Your assertion should incorporate CAPA and Obama, although CAPA's principal is a PELA who seems to have grand ambitions for herself and enjoys pushing teachers around.
As for Dr.Holley, perhaps she will offer some change and perhaps not. She seems to me at least to be more of the same where PPS is concerned. There are those here who know that modern principal meetings are funny in that on one side, you have PELAs and their associates and on the other, you have 'old school' principals who wish t do what is right for their kids, buildings and admittedly shrinking lot.
Not sure where Dr.Holley would have been sitting.

Questioner said...

Dr. Holley's campaign motto is "Accountability for All" and she has explained at appearances that this means ALL- including central administration, principals, board members, parents and students. She has noted the lack of logic in giving teachers a fixed curriculum and then holding teachers alone accountable for its success. This does not sound like more of the same. There would not be so many people putting in so much effort for more of the same.

Anonymous said...

"you have 'old school' principals who wish t do what is right for their kids, buildings and admittedly shrinking lot.
Not sure where Dr.Holley would have been sitting. "

Ask those old school principals, they'll tell you what she's like. Or ask the new guard principals, though they're likely a little afraid of someone who knows so much about kids, teachers, and how things work.

I think from the website, this best sums it up: I was a risk taker that effectively correlated the district's vision with the needs of my students. That says it all, if subtly.

Curious George said...

To Anon 11:43,

Thanks for the Holley website info.

From what I read there (under the "The Issues" and "PPS Reform" tabs), it seems that she has a realistic view of the problems facing the district. In fact, I find some of her comments bold and refreshing.

I just wish she had a stand regarding school discipline. That's the number one problem facing our schools, in my opinion.

kathy fine said...

Dr. Holley is working n responses to all of the questions posed in an earlier post. Stay tuned....

Dr. Regina Holley said...

Thank you for posing such thoughtful and relevant questions. Here are my responses:

1. The RISE program will be used to evaluate teacher performance. The rubrics that are used in RISE were developed as a guide to help teachers improve their practice. However, the problem with this program is that it will be extremely difficult to use this in conjunction with a managed curriculum. As a former teacher, Reading Supervisor, School Improvement Supervisor and Principal, I told the consultants, the Curriculum Department and Dr. Lane that PPS needed more support in helping teachers understand the concept of how to use the rubric to reach the Distinguished Level. Unless it has changed over the past year, I believe it will be very difficult. Remember, everyone has to follow a script to teach.

I would also caution teachers about the use of rubrics when it is coupled with their evaluation. Again, I stressed my concern to Central Office about having a system wide observation protocol for teachers. All principals should be given professional development on observing and conferring.

Some people are not familiar with PULSE. This is the principal’s evaluation tool. It took them along time to figure out how to use it. Yes, it is subjective. Many principals whose schools made AYP were either forced to leave or given a poor performance rating.
While other principals struggled to advance their students academically, they were given promotions, and satisfactory ratings. I say this to all teachers, “Be very careful.”
Remember, to work very closely with the Union on this issue.

2 I do not believe in the 50% rule. My teachers and I followed the guidelines set by the district. However, parents were given the correct information on how many items the student missed. I do consider this as grade inflation. However, many of my colleagues and many teachers agreed to the 50% rule.

3. Everyone should be very cautious about how they interpret student success. I strongly believe that parents should be given factual information. Class projects, classroom participation etc. are important teaching strategies, but remember, students must still pass the test. I am an advocate for student engagement. However, I still believe that all instruction should compliment the standardized test that they will have to take at some point in their educational career.

4. A noted researcher Ron Edmonds is very clear that schools must be orderly. Teachers can not teach when inappropriate behaviors take over the school and classroom. It is imperative that we work together as a school community to help our struggling students. I can tell you that discipline was a major focus in my schools. I want to support all children. However, I am not naïve; I realize that some students need more support than others. PPS has the capacity to develop an Alternative Ed. Program that would help our students and schools.

I intend to work closely with staff, teachers and community agencies to develop policies and procedures that will create safe learning environments if I am elected as School Board Director. We have a discipline policy for PPS. I hope all schools are utilizing this information. If not, staff should remind school based administrators about the policy. Everyone should have a copy.

Curious George said...

Thank you Dr. Holley for your detailed post.

You have a very good grasp of the problems facing our schools. I hope your post here is widely circulated.