As an educator and taxpayer, I believe that the questions you posted to discuss this issue are misdirected. That is because they miss the historical context of the discussion.
First, the United States of America is one of the few nations that attempts to educate all students. For example, the TIMMS gets a lot of attention as proof that our educators don't teach our kids science and math as well as teachers in other countries. The TIMMS report compares our students' scores with countries that do not educate special populations, including native speakers of other languages and students with disabilities is comparing apples to oranges. If you want to investigate this further, host Bill Daggett to discuss this reality.
Second, one might consider starting the discussion to 1990 instead of 2000. The context of this discussing goes back to Measure 5, which limited county property tax support for education. The responsibility for supporting education was shifted to the state. All of a sudden, education was viewed as a greedy competitor for state funds. But salaries cost a lot of money and there are many teachers throughout this state. If someone wants to compare how much money the education system costs, perhaps we should talk about the number of teachers funded through the state budget versus the number of employees of other, lesser-funded departments. For instance, the state police should never be compared to education as a proportion of the state budget.
NCLB requires us to compare performance from one class of students against another group of students that goes through a teachers' class the following year. Again, let's compare apples to apples instead of group one to group two.
Finally, please take into special consideration the speaker who started your conversation. Oregon Connections Academy is not an acceptable representative of Charter Schools nor of public schools. You might look at the legislature's response to Oregon Connections Academy's practices in the session following their opening.
Thank you for considering my input.
posted 4 years, 8 months ago
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