Updated: Academy of Dover Principal Noel Rodriguez “Resigned” @KilroysDelaware @ed_in_de #netde #eduDE

Academy of Dover

Update, 10/9/14: I spoke with the acting principal, Cheri Marshall, yesterday and she informed me that Noel Rodriguez resigned.  No other official response was given by Marshall.  There is innuendo and allegations around the internet, but nothing official has come out at this time from Academy of Dover or the Delaware Department of Education in regards to these rumors.  Marshall served as the assistant principal prior to Rodriguez’ departure.

A few weeks ago, staff at Academy of Dover were summoned to an emergency meeting and were told Principal Noel Rodriguez was gone.  The assistant principal, Cheri Marshall, is the acting principal.  Nobody knows the details, but apparently Noel Rodriguez has been fired from his position as Principal of Academy of Dover.  Rodriguez has been plagued with controversy during his tenure at the Dover charter school.  Issues with transparency, financial issues, teacher turnaround, special education and a school that Rodriguez ruled like a dictator.  Nobody is talking about him, and it is like he never existed at the school.

In an earlier article today, it was announced Academy of Dover had received the Blue Ribbon award from the US DOE for their achievement in closing proficiency gaps, but when you look at the data on their proficiency, it is obvious there have been a huge amount of issues with the scores at Academy of Dover.  Could this have had something to do with Rodriguez’ ouster?  Last week ALL the Delaware charters were called to a non-public, secretive emergency meeting.  Could Academy of Dover’s proficiency scores been a topic?  Kilroy reported the US DOE was not happy about something with the Delaware charters in regards to their academic framework.  Nobody is talking yet, but if and when the news comes out, it will be just another example of a Delaware charter school leader thinking they can do what they want.

**UPDATED** Academy of Dover Named Blue Ribbon School? For What? Big Problems At This Charter School! @KilroysDelaware @ed_in_de @DoverPost #netde #eduDE

Blue Ribbon Fraud

United States Secretary of Education Arne Duncan named Academy of Dover, a charter school in Dover, DE as a Blue Ribbon School.  One of three in the state.  What is the criteria for this prestigious award?  It can’t be proficiency scores, because the below shows an overall rating of does not meet.  It can’t be for growth, cause they didn’t meet that either.  I’m guessing it was for closing the gaps among subgroups!  Okay…

So let me get this straight, the DE DOE blasts Christina and Red Clay for having “failing” schools and labels them priority schools, and gives them an ultimatum, but this school gets a Blue Ribbon?  The love for the charters in this state is absolutely sickening.  Someone needs to call for Mark Murphy to resign!

Here is a link to the announcement.  Try not to eat while reading it, cause you might throw up! http://www.doe.k12.de.us/news/2014/0930-1.shtml

To quote the press release: “Student subgroup performance for each subgroup is at high levels. Specifically, for the 2013-2014 award year, the Department strengthened the focus of both categories’ performance criteria around subgroups within a school and for all students.”

I find it ironic that this school is pre-dominantly African-American, and yet they are considered a sub-group?


Measure 1a. Are students meeting their fall to spring instructional scale score growth targets?

Rating: ELA

201011 26.7% F 34.3% F

201112 57.1% D 63.9% M

201213 34.3% F 55.7% D

201314 34.6% F 38.8% F

Percentage of Students in the Lowest Quartile Meeting Growth Targets

Rating: ELA

201011 45.0% D 36.8% F

201112 58.8% D 62.5% M

201213 47.1% D 64.7% M

201314 59.3% D 53.8% D

Measure 2a. Are students achieving proficiency on state examinations in math and ELA?

School Proficiency Scores, State Averages and Percentiles

Math, 201011 45.5% F 66.1% 86.3% 47.8%

Math, 201112 66.7% D 77.2% 94.1% 61.8%

Math, 201213 70.4% M 69.5% 91.6% 53.6%

Math, 201314 57.3% D 70.7% 92.5% 56.9%

ELA, 201011 52.8% D 61.6% 82.7% 45.6%

ELA, 201112 68.9% D 77.2% 92.9% 58.5%

ELA, 201213 74.6% M 67.9% 90.2% 52.2%

ELA, 201314 63.7% D 70.7% 90.2% 55.8%

Low SocioEconomic Status

Math, 201011 47.6% D 53.6% 81.3% 36.0%

Math, 201112 66.7% M 65.8% 90.8% 50.4%

Math, 201213 67.3% M 62.6% 85.3% 45.9%

Math, 201314 50.0% D 62.7% 87.1% 46.5%

ELA, 201011 51.7% M 48.4% 73.4% 33.5%

ELA, 201112 67.3% M 64.3% 89.1% 47.9%

ELA, 201213 69.2% M 61.2% 85.8% 43.9%

ELA, 201314 54.2% D 63.0% 83.4% 49.2%

Note: 2014 State Annual Measurable Objectives (AMOs) were 63.3% for ELA and 64.0% for Mathematics.

Students with Disabilities

Math, 201011 *** N/A N/A N/A N/A

Math, 201112 *** N/A N/A N/A N/A

Math, 201213 58.8% *M 51.8% 83.4% 31.0%

Math, 201314 35.3% *D 34.7% 71.1% 10.4%

ELA, 201011 *** N/A N/A N/A N/A

ELA, 201112 *** N/A N/A N/A N/A

ELA, 201213 70.6% *M 48.8% 84.0% 23.7%

ELA, 201314 37.5% *D 33.1% 69.0% 12.0%

Note: 2014 State Annual Measurable Objectives (AMOs) were 47.3% for ELA and 47.7% for Mathematics.

(editor’s note: those asterisks next to the numbers mean they don’t have enough special ed students in each category so they don’t count in proficiency numbers!)


Math, 201011 45.3% D 48.5% 74.5% 32.8%

Math, 201112 66.0% M 64.6% 94.1% 49.1%

Math, 201213 72.1% M 58.9% 84.1% 41.3%

Math, 201314 57.0% D 59.7% 87.0% 40.1%

School Proficiency Compared to Home District Proficiency

Math, 2010111 45.5% D 57.5%

Math, 2011122 66.7% D 75.0%

Math, 2012133 70.4% D 71.7%

Math, 2013144 57.3% D 70.6%

ELA, 2010111 52.8% D 59.2%

ELA, 2011122 68.9% D 82.5%

ELA, 2012133 74.6% D 75.3%

ELA, 2013144 63.7% D 69.9%

School Proficiency Compared to Similar Schools Proficiency

Math, 201011 45.5% D 52.8%

Math, 201112 66.7% M 66.8%

Math, 201213 70.4% M 59.2%

Math, 201314 57.3% D 59.8%

Academy Of Dover Charter School Overall Proficiency Rating for 2013-2014:

Does Not Meet

Or maybe they won the Blue Ribbon for their lack of transparency to parents and their community.  From their website, showing a complete disregard for state charter school code and regulations, as well as DOE rules and guidelines for charter schools:

2013-2014 School Year

Board Meetings 2013-2014 School Year (Tentative Schedule)

July 2013

August 2013                   Agenda                     Minutes

September 2013

October 2013                 Agenda                      Minutes

November 2013

December 2013

January 2014

February 2014                 Agenda                      Minutes

March 2014

April 2014                                                          Minutes

May 2014                         Agenda                     Minutes

June 2014

I could play Tic Tac Toe in some of those blank spots!  This is a school we give a national status to?  Did Mark Murphy slip in the shower and hit his head?  I’ve heard of a vast turnover at this charter school.  Noel Rodriguez is said to run the school with an iron fist, which is maybe why Markell gave them this award.  But the results don’t fit the prize, and Delaware should strip this award from Academy of Dover immediately!

UPDATED, 4:00pm, October 1st: I’ve been thinking about this all day.  Why Academy of Dover?  And then I remembered something.  A few months back, the charter school diva of The Delaware Charter School Network, Kendall Massett, went on Townsquare Delaware singing the praises of Delaware’s charters.  But she also wanted to reach out to parents in Kent and Sussex Counties to support more charters in the rest of the state.  Her plea failed miserably as ALL of the comments bashed charter schools in Delaware.  But what a way to prop up the charters in those counties, give one a huge award.  It’s all politics people, and like New Coke, I think charters in Delaware have hit their summit, and are falling fast.

Before you read a news article or crappy editorial and wonder what happened at CSD Board meeting last night, watch it.


Thanks to John Young for getting this up there so fast! It was an amazing experience to be part of this.

“You know who needs great leaders? The DOE needs great leaders.” John Young Hits Grand Slam Last Night! @KilroysDelaware @ed_in_de @DeStateBoardEd @GovernorMarkell @DianeRavitch @hanna_hurley #netde #eduDE

Delaware Priority Schools Takeover

There were so many great quotes from the Christina Board of Education meeting last night, and I will be updating this with the best of the best throughout the day and when the audio recording goes up.  But the one that stood out the most for me was this one:

“You know who needs great leaders? The DOE needs great leaders.”  John Young, board member extraordinaire, said this in regards to the DOE forcing the priority schools to accept new school “leaders” (they are principals) at a minimum of $160,000.

Even the Delaware News Journal quoted Board Member John Young with this awesome play on words.  Board member Harrie Ellen Minehan gave a long commentary about the strengths of the priority schools and how the DOE has exhibited disgusting and offensive behavior with their ultimatums.