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Reply #49: Houston Chronicle says KIPP excels. [View All]

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madfloridian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-31-10 11:21 AM
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49. Houston Chronicle says KIPP excels.
"Charter schools, which Texas began allowing in 1995, were supposed to set educators free and they did.

Paid for with state funds, and released from local school districts' rules, the best were free to excel: Houston-born charter systems KIPP and YES compiled terrific records of propelling minority and low-income kids into college.


Unfortunately, the worst charter schools were free to fail sometimes spectacularly, in ways that involved large amounts of money and criminal charges. In the Houston area, for instance, The Prepared Table saw its charter revoked in 2002; four of its administrators a pastor and three relatives were alleged to have stolen $3 million from federal and state programs. The Jesse Jackson Academy (with campuses in both Houston and Fort Worth) closed in 2008 amid charges it had misappropriated $3.2 million in federal grants. And last year, Gulf Shores Academy had to be reformulated after school administrators allegedly swindled more than $10 million from the state.

Given that dismal history, it's almost a relief that the latest bad news about Texas charter schools doesn't involve anything illegal. The Texans Can charter-school chain may be infuriating. But it appears to operate entirely within the law.

As the Chronicle's Jennifer Radcliffe recently reported, nine of the school's 10 schools are rated academically unacceptable by the state, and three are on the verge of being closed for repeated failure to meet federal standards. At Houston's Main Street campus, state data show that none of the 15 freshmen enrolled in 2001-02 managed to earn a high school diploma within six years. That's a 0 percent success rate."

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/editorial/6843688.h...

I often wonder how passing one test formed in secret and graded in secret can make sure a kid is prepared for college.

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