The Educational Class System

Neatly tucked away at the end of the Sunday Ledger-Enquirer story about the Muscogee County School Board retreat  was a much more alarming report than the cell-phone-used- for-cheating issue that got top billing and tons of space.  More portables are being added to Northside, and   Hardaway High Schools. It’s not because of population increase in Columbus, but because students are transferring out of Carver, Kendrick, Jordan, Spencer, and Shaw High Schools.  Those schools did not make Adequate Progress last year. When that happens the federal No Child Left Behind Act says students can transfer to schools that did make Progress.

But, it is really worse than that. Two of the under-performing schools had no Star Students last year.  Neither Jordan nor Carver had a student who made the minimum SAT score to be a Star Student.  

Columbus High, where most of the real classroom achievers congregate,  will not have to take any of the No Child Left Behind transferring students because, as the article says, “it is a total magnet school.”  

What does this do to the morale students remaining at those schools?   What does it do to their teachers? Why is it happening?  Have we, as a society, decided that we’ll have good schools for good students and to hell with the rest? 

This is an educational disgrace.

We can’t blame the system’s new superintendent, Susan Andrews, for this. She inherited this situation, and she says she is committed to improving test scores at the under-achieving schools.  Let’s hope she gets some results.

I  get the feeling that No Child Left Behind, while maybe the result of good intentions, is leaving a lot of children behind.

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