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Showing posts from March, 2009

How Good Is Lee's Summit and Missouri?

Spending

Our tax levy is one of the highest in the metro area, yet we spend among the least on our students. Our children can learn in any building.

During the last election one of the present school board members said that he would hold up our facilities to any of those in Johnson County. I didn’t move to Lee’s Summit to compete with Johnson County. I moved here because the schools were supposed to be among the best that the metro had to offer.

Here is an article from the Lee’s Summit R-VII newsletter:

The Kansas City Business Journal recently featured a listing of the top 25 school districts based on enrollments. The information including budget and employee statistics appeared in an October 2008 issue of the publication.

Lee’s Summit R-7 ranked seventh in the metropolitan area in terms of total enrollment among the 25 districts selected for the newspaper edition. The R-7 School District’s total enrollment for this school year is 17,137.

The six districts in the metro area with hig…

Missouri Lowered The Standards

Some critics suggested that NCLB created incentives for schools, districts, and states to manipulate test results. For example, schools have been shown to employ "creative reclassification" of drop-outs (to reduce unfavorable statistics). NCLB also may have caused some states to lower their official standards. Because each state could produce its own standardized tests, a state could make its statewide tests easier to pass, thereby increasing test scores. Missouri for example, improved testing scores but openly admitted that they had lowered the standards. Critics also said that punitive measures against "failing schools" created incentives to set expectations lower rather than higher. Critics even said the legislation tended to increase segregation by race and class, to be followed-up by pushing low-performing students out of school altogether.

Other critics argued that NCLB caused teachers to "teach to the test", focusing all their efforts on things that…