By many measures, Stege Elementary School in Richmond demands change. The K-6 school is one of 481 of the 10,000 California schools cited as lowest performing in the state in 2017-18, based on low test scores, high suspensions and chronic absenteeism. Because it is losing so many students, the West Contra Costa Unified School District in the East Bay has designated the school for a complete redesign over the next 18 months in hopes of attracting more students and experienced teachers.
“What we’re trying to do here is ring the bell, raise the flag and say we believe it’s time to do something different,” Superintendent Matthew Duffy told the community at a recent meeting. “We cannot be back here in three or four years with only 110 kids at Stege, talking about how we need to close the school.”