Our Journey

The Providence Public School District (PPSD) is writing a new, exciting chapter in its history. While we look forward to turning the page, it is important to remember how we got here.

Late 2018

The State of Rhode Island released the results of the state’s first-ever Rhode Island Comprehensive Assessment System (RICAS) exams. The results were extremely disappointing in Providence, with just 10 percent of students proficient in Math and 14 percent in English Language Arts.

April 2019

Angélica Infante-Green is appointed as the Rhode Island Commissioner of Education. She and her team immediately begin to assess and respond to the disappointing statewide RICAS results, with a special focus on Providence.

May 2019

Working with Governor Gina M. Raimondo and Mayor Jorge Elorza, Infante-Green asks the Johns Hopkins Institute for Education Policy to conduct an in-depth study of PPSD. The Johns Hopkins team works with a panel of local and national education experts and community leaders to conduct an independent and intensive study of the Providence schools.

June 25, 2019

Johns Hopkins presents its report on PPSD to the Rhode Island Council on Elementary and Secondary Education. The report’s central finding is that the “system is fundamentally broken,” with challenges that include neglected school buildings, layers of needless bureaucracy, inadequate curriculum and professional development, and demoralized teachers and parents.

July 2019

Commissioner Infante-Green and Mayor Elorza host a series of nine public forums across the city, allowing hundreds of parents, teachers, and others to voice their frustration over the failures of PPSD and begin a long-delayed conversation over how to improve the city’s schools.

July 23, 2019

Commissioner Infante-Green delivers a presentation to the Council on Elementary and Secondary Education outlining the troubling findings of the Johns Hopkins report and additional information gathered during the public forums. She recommends the Council grant her its authority to intervene in PPSD, pursuant to the Crowley Act. They vote unanimously to grant her that authority.

August 8, 2019

Commissioner Infante-Green issues her Proposed Order of Control and Reconstitution of PPSD. Per the Crowley Act, she advises the Mayor, City Council, School Board, and Superintendent that they have 30 days to “show cause” why she should not intervene in the city schools. None of the four parties objects to her Order.

September 13, 2019

Commissioner Infante-Green convenes the “show cause” hearing to record that no one objects to her Order, per the process outlined in the Crowley Act.

October 11, 2019

Commissioner Infante-Green issues her final Order for Control and Reconstitution, clarifying and strengthening the role of the community in contributing to the Turnaround Plan for PPSD. She also announces November 1 as the first day of state control of PPSD.

November 1, 2019

The State of Rhode Island assumes control of the management and operation of PPSD.

December 17, 2019

RIDE names the 45 members of the Community Design Teams (CDTs) to help develop a Turnaround Plan for PPSD. These members were selected by an independent board of volunteer advisors from 222 nominated community members. CDT members include parents, students, educators, and members of groups such as Parents Leading for Educational Equity, the Latino Policy Institute, and ARISE, to name a few.

March 7, 2020

RIDE and the 45 members of the three Community Design Teams (World-Class Talent, Engaged Communities, and Excellence in Learning) host a Community Day to share the recommendations they have developed. Several hundred community members attend the event to review and discuss the teams’ proposals.

March 23, 2020

PPSD joins all Rhode Island public schools in transitioning to Distance Learning to complete the school year. In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, Providence school leaders, teachers, students, and families step up to keep learning happening.

June 23, 2020

RIDE and PPSD release “Turning Hope Into Results: A Turnaround Action Plan for the Providence Public School District.” The TAP contains a set of ambitious, measurable goals to transform PPSD over the next five years, as well as 40 focused strategies to drive results, 26 of which were CDT recommendations.

September 14, 2020

Students return to partial in-person learning across the Providence Public School District.

December 21, 2020

RIDE and PPSD release “Building on Hope: One Year Report on the Providence Public Schools’ Transformation.”