About this series


For years The Miami Herald has been reporting the story of Florida's failing schools. The one with the worst academic record in the state: Miami Central Senior High.

As Nicole Louis, president of the class of '09, bluntly put it: "People think of Central and they think of a bad school with bad kids. They don't look any deeper."

But thanks to unprecedented access granted to journalists by the Miami-Dade school district and Central Principal Doug Rodriguez, we are looking deeper. What we've found is a school whose metabolism has been reenergized. "We will shine in '09" is the school's motto.

Today, reporter Kathleen McGrory, photographer Carl Juste and videographer Jose Iglesias introduce you to many of the problems the school has faced -- and what it is doing to overcome them.

On Monday, journalists will take you inside the classroom as students -- nervous, cocky, determined -- prepare for this week's FCATs.

In the coming months, you'll see the school through the eyes of the students and meet the community of alumni frustrated by the decline of their alma mater.

And, whether the school passes or fails the test -- we'll find out in July -- you'll know that Central is not "a bad school with bad kids."

Read more School on the Brink stories from the Miami Herald


    3 men on a mission to save failing school

    A trio of leaders strive to make Miami Central Senior High a school that its community can be proud of.


    School devoted to FCAT success

    Miami Herald journalists have been granted unprecedented access to Miami Central High as it works to end a string of five straight F's on the FCAT.


    Principal strives to remake Miami Central High

    Miami Central High is fighting to avoid a grim distinction: the first Florida public school closed, or radically overhauled, because of academic failure.

Miami Herald

Join the

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category