Lies and Statistics.THE RELEASE OF THE 2000-01 Arkansas Arkansas, river, United States
Arkansas (ärkăn`zəs, är`kənsô'), river, c.1,450 mi (2,330 km) long, rising in the Rocky Mts., central Colo. Benchmark Exam results showed that some of the most advanced fourth- and eighth-grade students in Arkansas are enrolled in some of the smallest school districts.
For instance, 89 percent of the fourth-graders in Kingston School District (enrollment: 220) proved they were working at or above their grade level in literacy. And 92 percent of the fourth-graders at Deer School District (255 students) were at or above grade level in math.
In fact, of the 17 individual school districts that ranked in the top five for achievement in either math or literacy at the fourth- or eighth-grade level, all but One -- Greenwood Greenwood.
1 City (1990 pop. 26,265), Johnson co., central Ind.; settled 1822, inc. as a city 1960. A residential suburb of Indianapolis, Greenwood is in a retail shopping area. Manufactures include motor vehicle parts and metal products. School District, enrollment 3,166 -- were smaller than the state average of 1,444. And only one more, Mountain View with 1,221 students, was anywhere near the average. Most had 200-400 students.
Yes, small school districts have proven that they can turn out better-prepared students than the large districts. Since this fact is the only argument I have yet heard against widespread administrative consolidation of the 310 school districts in the state, I thought I'd give credit Where it's due. And then I thought I'd debunk de·bunk
tr.v. de·bunked, de·bunk·ing, de·bunks
To expose or ridicule the falseness, sham, or exaggerated claims of: debunk a supposed miracle drug. the argument completely.
You see, the worst-performing schools on the list are just as likely to be small districts. For instance, at Parkin parkin
Brit a moist spicy ginger cake usually containing oatmeal [origin unknown] (433 students), not a single fourth-grader tested at the fourth-grade level in math or literacy. Of the 13 school districts that were in the bottom five for achievement in either math or literacy at the fourth- or eighth-grade level, all but one--Helena-West Helena, 3,675 students -- were smaller-than-average districts.
(A legislative audit report issued last month on the Helena-West Helena district found quite a lot of questionable management practices. The $100,000 it spent last year. on travel for its administrators and school board members apparently didn't translate into effective instruction for its students.)
Those vested interests vested interest
1. Law A right or title, as to present or future possession of an estate, that can be conveyed to another.
2. A fixed right granted to an employee under a pension plan.
3. (i.e., school administrators and school board members) who are desperately seeking to justify our state's ridiculously wasteful and top-heavy Top-heavy
At a price level where supply is exceeding demand. See: Resistance level. educational system might argue that some school districts perform well because they have such fine administrators. I haven't actually heard that argument from anyone, but I can debunk it before it crops up. And I don't have to look very far.
At Jefferson Elementary School Jefferson Elementary School can refer to the following schools:
Having or marked by an advanced degree of competence, as in an art, vocation, profession, or branch of learning.
An expert; an adept. or advanced in math, and 97 percent were proficient or advanced in literacy. Meanwhile, at Stephens Elementary, none of the kids reached the fourth-grade level in math, and only 6 percent were proficient in literacy.
Both schools are in the Little Rock School District, so the size of the district is identical in both cases. The same administration that takes credit for Jefferson must take the blame for Stephens. Little Rock is the largest district in the state, yet it can succeed, and it can fail -- just like small districts.
What the Benchmark results show, beyond any argument, is that the size of the school district has virtually nothing to do with the performance of the children. What counts is the principal, the teachers, the students and their parents. The rest is academic.
My son was one of those fourth-graders who took the Benchmark test last spring. I want to congratulate his teachers at Lakewood Elementary School elementary school: see school. , Angie Colclasure and Michael Stone, for turning out the most proficient fourth-graders in the North Little Rock School District. Stone who taught math skills, achieved proficiency pro·fi·cien·cy
n. pl. pro·fi·cien·cies
The state or quality of being proficient; competence.
Noun 1. proficiency - the quality of having great facility and competence in 75 percent of the students -- and it was his first year of teaching. Imagine what he'll be able to do with a few years of experience under his belt. (I can tell you that he already has a reputation for being strict.)
Stone and Colclasure have to share the credit with the teachers who had those kids from kindergarten kindergarten [Ger.,=garden of children], system of preschool education. Friedrich Froebel designed (1837) the kindergarten to provide an educational situation less formal than that of the elementary school but one in which children's creative play instincts would be through third grade. No wonder enrollment is up more than 7 percent at Lakewood this year.
I read that Lynn Cheney, wife Vice President Dick Cheney, said the whole world mispronounces their last name. It should be CHEE-ney, she said, not CHAY-ney.
I know just how, she feels. My last name is pronounced MOR-itz, almost like Morris, yet most people assume it is Muh-RITZ, like the old Cafe St. Moritz . I've been called worse. Much worse. St. Moritz (German: Sankt Moritz, Romansh: San Murezzan) is a popular resort town in the Engadine valley in Switzerland.
Gwen Moritz is editor of Arkansas Business. E-mail her at gmoritz@abpg.