H. Neal Glanville: The results are your answer
January 14, 2011
I read Monday's story in the Craig Daily Press, "Scoring the schools," three times and had yet to make heads, tails or even apples and grapes out of it.
"Without jumping to any conclusions," I decided I was going to set the paper aside and try again later.
It was 4:30 a.m. Thursday when I went for a fresh start on the Moffat County School District's assessment of our student test scores.
If I'm to take into consideration that these scores are over a three-year period, the only good news for our district is … well, I don't see any.
Hoping a statewide search for schools with averages closer to ours will soften the blow for parents in the district makes as much sense as plowing school parking lots during Christmas break.
To take a double deep breath and say we should be comparing ourselves to Montrose, Alamosa, Cortez, Littleton or Delta, and then second winding it with, we should "compare ourselves to ourselves" is passing the buck back to a system that appears to be failing our kids.
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I'm quite certain that the compared cities are doing the best they can with what they've got, but to be frank — no, let's be honest — the educational system with its "no child left behind" mentality is a bust.
The bright side of this report was the implication that going to a new school was a "global transition" that somehow lowered test scores and disrupted the system.
If that's the case, my graduation from Butler Elementary to Midvale Junior High, with its half-mile or so walk to the bus stop and the 30- to 40-minute bus ride, was as near to Mars as I'm ever going to get.
Oh yeah, the bright side.
Since the scores at the new school are lower than the rest, they can only go up. Now there's an improvement.
We live in an age that demands you be able to read, write and comprehend basic mathematics.
Every second that passes our children by without these skills is adding yet another number to the rolls of people in the unemployment line.
Our technology is changing so fast that without these three basics to build on, your children will spend their lives punching pictures at some fast food restaurant and returning the correct change because the computer screen told them to.
There's no skill involved in stuffing a phone in your bra, or being able to text someone from your pocket — there is skill involved in being able to keep up with our rapidly-changing technology, which can only come from a solid educational base.
If you doubt this for a second, give your kid a pencil and some paper and have them write a letter to a relative, or give them some simple math problems.
The results will be your answer.
I'd like to say thank you to "nanny" for letting me play in the sandbox. I'm still giggling over that prestigious award, and another thanks to the H. Neal Glanville fan club.
Who'd a thunk it?
Hey, you be careful out there and stay to the light.