Some of you are old enough to recall the hit “Double shot of my baby’s love” by the Swingin’ Medallions. This happened in 1966.
Well, Alabama public education is about to be hit with a double shot of bad news. Feb. 1 the public will find out which schools around the state have received low marks on the new state school report card. This will generate stories in the media and cause consternation among some mamas and daddies.
And basically we will learn what we already know–high poverty schools do not perform well. Never mind that we have spend countless energy and resources for the last five years trying to come up with a grading system. Never mind that there is no valid research showing that A-F school report cards are beneficial in any way. Never mind that the great majority of states do not use A-F. Never mind that most of the top-ranked states in the nation do not use it.
And never mind that we are using data to score schools from a test that the state has said is not a good one and will never be used again.
But WE WILL be giving all those who talk about charter schools, vouchers, school choice, etc. new ammunition to use in the battle against public schools.
In addition, in the next few days we will also release the annual list of “failing” schools that the Accountability Act requires. You know, the one that says the bottom six percent of all public schools are failing. (If six percent of public schools are failing, wouldn’t then six percent of all private schools be failing as well?. But we don’t judge them. We just keep taking money away from he Education Trust Fund for vouchers for private schools.)
And this news, like A-F report cards, will give the media and the public another opportunity to decry our public school system. The one that educates 90 percent of all the children in Alabama.
Who needs enemies when we have so many friends?