More than half of Pennsylvania's 92 worst-performing schools are in the Philadelphia School District, the state said Tuesday.

Thirteen of the 47 city schools on the state Department of Education's list were shuttered in June as part of the district's effort to close schools based on low enrollment, maintenance needs, and chronic academic problems.

Superintendent William R. Hite Jr. said Tuesday night that he was disappointed that so many district schools were on the state's list. He pointed out that the district was by far the largest in the state, and had the most low-income children and students with special needs.

"This is a further call to action around the need to dramatically improve instructional practices in our schools," he said.

Carolyn Dumaresq, the state's acting education secretary, said the lowest performers among the state's 3,000 district and charter schools would get additional help to meet academic standards as a result of a recent waiver of the federal No Child Left Behind law.

The breakdown released by her department also listed several charter schools, including five in Philadelphia. One, Hope, in the Germantown section, agreed to close in June.

Five additional Philadelphia charters on the "worst-performing" roster are former low-achieving district schools that the Philadelphia School Reform Commission handed over to charter operators to turn around.

Schools in Delaware and Montgomery Counties also landed on the list - four in the Chester Upland district and one each from the Norristown, Upper Darby, and William Penn districts.

Dumaresq said the state hoped to have by November at least eight Education Department representatives known as "academic recovery liaisons" working with groups of principals. She said she also expected Gov. Corbett's next proposed state budget to include extra funds to help the targeted schools.

Although the department has not yet released statewide test scores for the 2012-13 academic year, the department compiled its list based on those scores as well as other factors, including whether schools received federal aid because they had a high percentage of students from low-income families.


For a list (.pdf) of the 92 worst-performing schools that the Pennsylvania Department of Education said would receive academic help, go to