Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Charter Pendulum does a double-take.

One way from Pittsburgh, via Schools Matter:
Among charter school students, about 20 percent didn't meet basic academic standards in reading and math, compared with about 12 percent of district students, according to 2009 Pennsylvania System of Student Assessment test results ....
About 75 percent of Pennsylvania public school students scored advanced or proficient in reading and math, compared with about 59 percent of charter school students ...
and then back the other way from Reason TV, via Joanne Jacobs, :
Hurricane Katrina destroyed one of the worst public school systems in the U.S., says Reason TV. New Orleans started fresh with a system based on choice. Now, “60% of New Orleans students currently attend charter schools, test scores are up, and talented and passionate educators from around the country are flocking to New Orleans to be a part of the education revolution.”
all in the same day.

Makes you wonder how long it will take for them to notice that the gains by KIPP and other charters have more to do with selected students than with superior funding methods? That charter schools don't have the same SpecEd requirements? That charter and private schools are relieved of many regulations and have the flexibility of getting rid of problem students? (defined as students who cause trouble, or in the case of KIPP, don't want to work too hard or for 60 hours a week.)

And yes, it is still despicable to say that Katrina had a silver lining in that it "improved the public school system." Even if that caveat were true, and it's not, the statement assumes that death and massive destruction has a good side.

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