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Proposed 2020-2021 Grade Configuration Changes for Central Neighborhood Schools

Superintendent Deborah Gist plans to recommend to the Board of Education that the 6th grades from Burroughs, Emerson, Academy Central, Wayman Tisdale, and Mark Twain be moved Central Junior High to create a 6th-8th grade middle school effective in the 2020-2021 school year.

We know from research and experience that minimizing transitions supports strong academic performance and meaningful relationships with teachers and peers.  This proposed change would be a continuation of our work to create consistent grade configurations district-wide so that students in Tulsa Public Schools would experience no more than two transitions: from 5th grade to 6th grade and from 8th grade to 9th grade. Students in the Central neighborhood would experience no more than one transition: from 5th to 6th grade. Additionally, in a middle school setting, students will have expanded access to developmentally appropriate activities, spaces, and experiences.

It is important to know that no decisions have been made at this point. We anticipate that the Tulsa Board of Education would consider any potential changes in January 2020. As part of the Board’s consideration of any proposed changes for the 2020-2021 school year, there will be opportunities for community members to share their feedback with Board members. You can find information about speaking to the Board, meeting dates, and agendas at

Students and families who are interested in exploring other middle grade options can attend our Enrollment Expo on Saturday January 11 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Cox Business Center and learn about all of our schools. Students and families will be invited to attend “Open House” events at Central in the early spring of 2020. Families can also contact the Central team directly to schedule a visit to learn more about the school.

The presentation from the January Parent Meeting can be found below.