Sunday, February 14, 2010

Detroit To End Child Abuse aka "Social Promotion"

DETROIT FREE PRESS (Feb. 5) -- "Amiya Olden remembers well the day she graduated from Denby High School in Detroit. She handed her diploma to her mother, Karen Olden, who read it to her. "Then when someone asked me to read it, I could remember the things that she read, and I knew what I had to say," recalled Amiya Olden, now 22. Amiya could not read her own diploma.

Amiya Olden, like many students in schools across Michigan, suffered a kind of child abuse that the state Legislature not only allows but supports: social promotion."

DETROIT FREE PRESS (Feb. 12) -- "Detroit Public Schools emergency financial manager Robert Bobb plans to sign an executive order today ending social promotions, the practice of advancing students to the next grade when they’re not really ready.

The district began, for the first time, quarterly assessments of student proficiency this week. The results will be used, along with MEAP scores, to chart student progress and determine who needs more help to go onto the next grade. Such assessments are standard in nearly every other school district in the country."


At 2/14/2010 12:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

... a stunning one out of three working-age Michigan adults don't have the reading skills to get a family-sustaining job ...

Making them perfect fodder for the welfare state and life-long Democrat voters.

Bobb faces criticism and resistance from some teachers who say ... that Bobb is trying to help dismantle the city school district to make room for charter schools ... "It's just a setup against the teachers and students of Detroit," said Steve Conn, an activist and math teacher at Cass Technical High School for the past 25 years.

Activist? For whom? You see, it's really not about the kids at all, it's about the teachers unions and maintaining their monopoly on public education. If there is anyone guilty of "child abuse" it's the unions.

At 2/14/2010 12:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Try to imagine the kind of reporting and public chest-beating that we would see if these kids were receiving this kind of education from a private school supported by taxpayer money. The state would not hesitate to withdraw it's support and prosecute those responsible. And they would not have waited decades and waisted the potential of thousands of children to do it.

At 2/14/2010 6:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

L.A. School District Pays Unionized Failures $50,000 To Go Away

... the Weekly has found, in a five-month investigation, that principals and school district leaders have all but given up dismissing such teachers. In the past decade, LAUSD officials spent $3.5 million trying to fire just seven of the district's 33,000 teachers for poor classroom performance — and only four were fired, during legal struggles that wore on, on average, for five years each. Two of the three others were paid large settlements, and one was reinstated. The average cost of each battle is $500,000.

During our investigation, in which we obtained hundreds of documents using the California Public Records Act, we also discovered that 32 underperforming teachers were initially recommended for firing, but then secretly paid $50,000 by the district, on average, to leave without a fight. Moreover, 66 unnamed teachers are being continually recycled through a costly mentoring and retraining program but failing to improve, and another 400 anonymous teachers have been ordered to attend the retraining.

LAUSD's Dance of the Lemons, LAWeekly

At 2/14/2010 6:48 PM, Blogger juandos said...

Hmmm, sounds like black on black crime to me...

Administration Again Cuts Funding for Scholarship Program That Helps Low-Income D.C. Kids

At 2/14/2010 9:24 PM, Anonymous gettingrational said...

Detroit schools were obviously a deploma mill.

All of the previous top administrators should at least give up all retirement benefits for perpetrating a fraud.

At 2/14/2010 9:41 PM, Blogger Auntie Ann said...

On one side is social promotion: allowing a failed student to go on to the next grade regardless of having learned anything.

On the other side is retention: having a child repeat a failed grade.

Problem with ending social promotion and falling back to the retention model is that nearly all the studies out there (and I've read dozens of them) say that retained children do worse than they would have done if they had been promoted.

In other words, kids actually get further educationally if they are promoted than if they are not. Take two kids in the same position, promote one and retain the other. In the end, the promoted kid will end up knowing more than the retained kid.

Here's a link to a page with 10 links to journal articles that show this point.

"The Gift of Time" as it's called (giving a kid 2 years at the same grade level) doesn't work.

Not only that, but there are harmful effects to take into account as well. When these kids get to high school, they are a year, and sometimes more, older than their peers. They can drive earlier, they become sexually active earlier, they are more likely to drop out and are more likely to get into drugs.

Retention is the wrong solution to a very big problem. The problem is that the schools aren't teaching. Having kids sit in the same awful classroom for two years instead of one doesn't help them.

The solution is to actually address the bad classrooms and the lack of actual teaching, not torture the kids by retaining them in a class that already has shown to have failed them once.

The only time retained kids do actually do better, is if they are put in a different classroom with different teaching methods, one that works hard to redress the failed education they got the year before.

Anything else fails.

At 2/15/2010 12:17 AM, Blogger Auntie Ann said...

Oops, forgot the link to the articles: 10 Articles on Retention.

At 2/15/2010 1:09 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The solution is to actually address the bad classrooms and the lack of actual teaching, not torture the kids ...

I would agree, but the Democrats and the teachers unions run the show and they have elected "torture".

At 2/15/2010 8:52 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can anyone explain to me how teachers' unions benefit either students or taxpayers (i.e., parents)?


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