Tuesday, March 23, 2010

The Dumping Has Begun Again

Better Than Every Other High School is starting to worry about regents grades this year. The school is worried about a high failure rate on the algebra and trigonometry regents and the possible loss of their status. BTEO HS has decided to implement Plan D immediately. Kids in trig are being removed from that class and dumped in another class that has no regents requirement, or even worse, a class that only requires seat time. (These kids have already fulfilled their regents requirement in math.) Two term algebra students are also being removed from their classes and dumped into four term classes in an effort to postpone the inevitable failing grade.

BTEO HS has used this plan many times before. Ms. H, was lauded as the best regents teacher in the school but the reality was every failing student was always removed from her class before the exam and then added to someone other teacher's roster. It was never a mystery as to why her stats were always great.

Here are some things I would like to know before I even look at the statistics:
1. How many of the students began the course in September and are still taking the course?
2. What happened to the kids who are no longer taking the course?

3. Which teachers had the biggest loss of failing students?
4. What measures were taken to help turn failing students around?
5. Are we giving up on these kids only because of the numbers?
6. What is wrong with allowing a kid to fail and then retake a course? Sometimes the second time around is the charm and even in failing, the student might learn some valuable material that will help them later on in life.

Just remember, when you are looking at statistics things are not always what they appear to be. Numbers not only lie but can be used to show almost any result desired.

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