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State Department of Education releases list of low-achieving schools; 14 added from last year

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Friday, Feb. 1, 2013, 6:07 p.m.

The state Department of Education on Friday released its list of low-achieving schools, which includes 14 additions from last year and removals of 29 others in Western Pennsylvania.

The list includes 406 schools in 71 school districts across Pennsylvania. Using combined math and reading scores from the 2011-12 Pennsylvania System of School Assessment tests, the list consists of the lowest-achieving 15 percent of elementary and secondary schools.

Career and technology centers and charter schools are not included.

Students living within the boundaries of low-achieving schools can apply for scholarships to attend other participating public and private schools if they fall within the household income limits under the Opportunity Scholarship Tax Credit Program.

For the 2013-14 school year, the program is limited to students whose annual household incomes don't exceed $75,000, plus $12,000 for each dependent living in the household.

The maximum scholarship award available to non-special education students is $8,500 and the maximum for a special-education student is $15,000.

The program is funded by businesses that donate to receive a tax credit.

The list can be found by clicking on the Opportunity Scholarship Tax Credit icon on the department's website at

Brian Bowling is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-325-4301 or

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