Wednesday, June 19, 2013

School Grading System a Farce

The school grading system in Louisiana is a farce. It results in the stigmatizing and unfair condemnation of professional educators, the constant uprooting of innocent children from educationally nurturing environments, transfers from one failed charter to another, the use of gifted and talented to boost grades, the shunning of students with disabilities to boost scores and generally all manner of manipulations that have nothing to do with education. There is no way to fix the grading system because it is based on the incorrect assumption that poverty is not really the overriding factor in student performance. It needs to be simply done away with and replaced by a system that allows educators to tackle the achievement gap in a logical professional way that does not drive dedicated educators away from low achieving communities.

The sad case of Delmont Elementary School in East Baton Rouge Parish is a perfect example of the vicious practices spawned by this insane system. To make a long story short, a new local superintendent misjudged the progress being made at this newly reorganized school in only its second year of a 3 year plan, and uprooted all educators and students in a knee jerk reaction to prevent state takeover. It turns out that the state takeover was not really being planned as confirmed by John White, and the school was making significant progress. So an excellent school will be closed and children shipped around to schools where they are unlikely to ever recover from the destruction of their positive learning environment. An excellent principal and top notch teaching staff will see all of their hard work building a productive school go down the drain. This is the insanity that is called school reform in Louisiana.

Both our state and some local public school systems are being run by incompetent persons who masquerade as educators.