Here’s the new list of ‘failing’ schools in Alabama

For the first time, state education officials released the “failing” schools list on Nov. 1 as required by law.

This year, there are 74 schools in 28 school districts plus one public charter school on the “failing” school list. Last year, there were 76 schools in 27 districts.

The Alabama Accountability Act, passed in 2013, requires the bottom 6% of schools, as measured by the percentage of students who are proficient on the standardized test taken the previous spring, to be labeled as “failing.”

Birmingham City Schools has the most schools on the list, with 16, down from 20 last year. Montgomery County has 11 schools on the list, up from 10. Mobile County has seven, two fewer than last year, and Huntsville City has two, down one from three last year. Jefferson County has one school on the list.

“We are working to do better,” Montgomery’s Chief Academic Officer Bernard Mitchell said in a press release. “We are so excited that we are making progress on our state report card numbers, and we are expecting to perform better in academic achievement as well.”

Students in “failing” schools must be notified and given a list of four choices for the 2020-21 school year: stay in the school, transfer to a non-failing school within the same school district (transportation must be provided for the district), transfer to a neighboring public school district (if they’ll accept the student), or enroll in a private or home school.

This list differs in part from schools that earned F’s on the 2019 education report card. The report card is based on multiple factors, while the “failing” schools list is based on only the achievement test.

The state’s first public charter school, ACCEL Academy in Mobile, is on the list this year and earned a 59, an “F”, on the 2019 report card. The school’s focus is to re-engage students who are at risk of dropping out of school and who have already dropped out.

To help students leave failing schools, state law allows parents a credit against their income tax for the cost to move the student along with the cost of tuition, up to 80 percent of what the state pays to educate the student in a public school.

If a student is enrolled in and then leaves a “failing” school for a private school and the parent of the student is eligible for an claims a tax credit, 20 percent of the state funding for that student is then allocated to the “failing” public school the following year. That doesn’t amount to much, though, because so few parents are eligible to claim the credit.

For students who are in families with low income who choose a private school, state law allows nonprofit organizations to provide scholarships to pay the cost of the private school. They’re commonly referred to as tax-credit scholarships because those scholarship funds come from donors who can take a credit against their income tax liability for the amount of their donation, up to a limit defined by law.

Originally billed as a way to help students escape “failing” public schools, state lawmakers re-branded the Alabama Accountability Act as a school choice program in 2015, more accurately matching how the program is being used.

Each year, only about a third of recipients have been zoned to attend a currently-labeled “failing” school, records show.

Here is the full list.

School district School name
Acceleration Day and Evening Academy Acceleration Day and Evening Academy
Barbour County Barbour County High School
Barbour County Barbour County Intermediate School
Bessemer City Abrams Elementary School
Bessemer City Bessemer City High School
Birmingham City Bush Hills STEAM Academy (formerly Bush Hills Academy)
Birmingham City Charles A Brown Elementary School
Birmingham City George Washington Carver High School
Birmingham City Green Acres Middle School
Birmingham City Hayes K-8
Birmingham City Hemphill Elementary School
Birmingham City Hudson K-Eight School
Birmingham City Huffman High School-Magnet
Birmingham City Jackson-Olin High School
Birmingham City WE Putnam Middle School-Magnet
Birmingham City Smith Middle School
Birmingham City Washington Elementary School
Birmingham City Jones Valley Middle School
Birmingham City Wenonah High School
Birmingham City West End Academy
Birmingham City Woodlawn High School-Magnet
Bullock County South Highlands Middle School
Bullock County Bullock County High School
Chambers County Lafayette High School
Chambers County John P Powell Middle School
Chickasaw City Chickasaw Middle School
Chickasaw City Chickasaw City High School
Choctaw County Choctaw County High School
Conecuh County Hillcrest High School
Dallas County Keith Middle-High School
Dallas County Southside High School
Dallas County Tipton Durant Middle School
Dothan City Girard Primary School (formerly Girard Elementary School)
Escambia County Escambia County High School
Fairfield City Fairfield High Preparatory School
Greene County Greene County High School
Greene County Robert Brown Middle School
Huntsville City Martin Luther King Jr Elementary School
Huntsville City Ronald McNair 7-8
Jefferson County Center Point High School
Lawrence County R A Hubbard High School
Linden City George P Austin Junior High School
Linden City Linden High School
Lowndes County Calhoun High School
Lowndes County Central High School
Midfield City Midfield High School
Mobile County Ben C Rain High School
Mobile County Mattie T Blount High School
Mobile County Calloway Smith Middle School
Mobile County Pillans Middle School
Mobile County John L Leflore Magnet School
Mobile County Chastang-Fournier Middle School
Mobile County Lillie B Williamson High School
Monroe County J F Shields High School
Montgomery County Bellingrath Middle School
Montgomery County Capitol Heights Middle School
Montgomery County Davis Elementary School
Montgomery County Dunbar-Ramer School
Montgomery County Goodwyn Middle School
Montgomery County Highland Gardens Elementary School
Montgomery County Jefferson Davis High School
Montgomery County Lanier Senior High School
Montgomery County Lee High School
Montgomery County Nixon Elementary School
Montgomery County Southlawn Middle School
Pickens County Aliceville High School
Selma City Selma High School
Selma City R. B. Hudson STEAM Academy (formerly R.B.Hudson Middle School)
Talladega City Talladega High School
Tarrant City Tarrant High School
Tuscaloosa City Westlawn Middle School
Wilcox County ABC Elementary
Wilcox County J E Hobbs Elementary School
Wilcox County Wilcox Central High School
Wilcox County Camden School Of Arts & Technology