School Bells: Web sites offer kudos to Ann Arbor and its schools

Kudos given to Ann Arbor and AAPS

Kiplinger’s Personal Finance has named Ann Arbor as one of its “Best Cities for the Next Decade,” basing the list on job growth, healthy economies and a vibrant local culture. Staff also included cities that are family oriented, have quality schools, low crime rates and lots of parks and recreation.

The report stresses that Kiplinger’s is listing the top 10 as recommendations, not rankings. The report says this about Ann Arbor:

“The Ann Arbor Public School District is consistently ranked one of the best in the country, and its students score far above average on state and national standardized tests. Add that to the city’s low crime rate and high family income, and you have a stable, progressive place to raise a family, 40 minutes from Detroit. Plus, it’s the home of the top-ranked University of Michigan, with three museums and great NCAA sports programs.”

School rankings in the report are based on information from For the full report, visit online.

In addition to the Kiplingers report, GreatSchools Top Cities survey,  selected The Ann Arbor Public Schools among its Top 10 school school districts in mid-sized cities in the United States. Ratings were based on a combination of GreatSchools ratings and data from the National Assessment for Educational Progress.

To read the full article, Best Cities to Live and Learn, visit here. The Ann Arbor Public Schools is featured in the Top Public Schools: Midsize U.S. Cities slideshow.

Permanent appointments made at Tappan

Tappan Middle School families will see two familiar faces in the main office this fall. Jazz Parks and Rick Weiler, who served in interim positions, have been appointed to permanent posts as principal and assistant principal, respectively.

Parks recently completed her third year as a Tappan administrator and Weiler taught at Tappan for 14 years before moving to an administrative post.

In a letter to parents announcing the appointments, Superintendent Todd Roberts called the two “an effective administrative team capable of providing high-quality leadership for Tappan in the coming years.”

Summer projects completed on time

A whole host of summer construction projects were completed on time over the summer months, with some final work to be done this fall at Pioneer, Executive Director of Physical Properties Randy Trent told the school board in August.

Most work was funded from the district’s Sinking Fund with the substantial work at Pioneer done as the final construction project funded by the voter-approved 2004 bond issue.

The large project at Pioneer included renovations to the cafeteria, book depository, business labs, SISS suite and the attendance and principals office area as well as the removal of portable classrooms from the south side of the building and a green courtyard installed. Work on the grass in this area is expected to be completed in early October to accommodate the fall growing season.

Partial roof replacements were also done at Huron and Pioneer.

Accessibility work for sidewalks and other concrete work at Allen and Haisley elementary schools, Scarlett Middle School, Stone High School and the transportation area is completed. After engineers check the slopes, handrails
will be installed where necessary, he said.

Site renovation work this summer included driveway replacement from Washtenaw Avenue at Angell Elementary, a bus loop dropoff replacement at Carpenter Elementary, rear driveway replacement at Mitchell elementary, parking lot replacement at Thurston Elementary.

Work at middle schools included rear parking replacement at Clague, asphalt replacement at Scarlett, rear maintenance entrance replacement at Slauson and asphalt replacement around most of the building at Tappan. Partial roof replacements were done at Clabue, Forsythe, Mitchell, Northside, Preschool & Family Center and Slauson.

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