Opinion: Charter schools prove more productive despite less funding

A longtime public advocate of school choice, Atlanta attorney Glenn Delk wrote a detailed response to the recent AJC report on uneven charter school performance in Georgia.

The newspaper focused on a recent report by the Georgia Charter Schools Commission that found 62 percent of the charter schools it authorized did no better than comparison school districts on the state report card.

Delk says the story ignored key differences.

Several of you have pointed out that Delk advertises his legal services to charter schools and companies, thus has an interest in seeing their numbers increase.

I asked Delk to address that reader concern:

“I’ve worked for over 25 years in favor of school choice in all forms,” he said. “Most of the work has been pro bono, although I have paying clients from time to time. My financial rewards pale in comparison to the millions spent annually by school districts on lawyers. However, since I believe in the free market, all I ask is that charters be given a fair chance to compete.”

In his piece below, Delk contends test scores don’t tell the whole story of student performance and the AJC failed to consider “how long students had attended the charter school, how far behind the student may have been when they left a traditional school and the funding inequities that exist.”

In fairness, I have to note traditional public schools are also judged on student performance —  regardless of how long the students have attended the school, how far behind the kids are when they start and in spite of budget cuts, furloughs and even reductions in the number of days students are in class.

Delk builds his arguments on reports out of the University of Arkansas School Choice Demonstration Project. For another interpretation of charter school data, especially funding, go here.

By Glenn Delk

Recently, the AJC published a news article that conveyed the impression charter schools in Georgia were, on the whole, performing no better, and even worse in many cases, than traditional public schools.

As the late columnist Paul Harvey used to say—“And now, for the rest of the story”

The method used by the AJC to compare the two types of public schools was flawed. The author simply compared the standardized test scores of the two segments on Georgia’s tests, and found “charters are about on par with traditional public schools.”  The author felt the sole criteria for judging the success or failure of charters was their test scores for a year, without regard for how long students had attended the charter school, how far behind the student may have been when they left a traditional school and the funding inequities that exist.

TimBrinton.NewsArtThe rest of the story can be found by looking at the results of two studies by the University of Arkansas in 2014 which compared the funding and productivity of charter schools throughout the country with traditional public schools. The report also broke down the findings by states.

The authors of the funding report gave Georgia’s political leaders an F in terms of giving charters the same funding, autonomy and accountability as traditional districts, finding Georgia’s charter school law “provides inadequate autonomy and accountability, as well as inequitable funding.”

The report details how charter schools in Georgia, when all sources of funding are compared to the funding available to traditional public schools, receive $4200 less per pupil, or 35.3 percent less than traditional district-run schools.

In addition to inequities in funding operations, Georgia charter schools face huge obstacles in locating and financing facilities. The AJC article failed to point out charters have no access to the billions of dollars in local option sales taxes available to traditional schools. In fact, the total amount of facilities funding made available to charters on an annual, competitive bid basis is $1.6 million. By way of comparison, Gwinnett Public Schools just announce a referendum on over $1 billion for facilities.

As the Arkansas report concludes, if traditional public schools were funded at the same level as charters, Georgia’s taxpayers would spend $5 billion less on k-12 education annually.

However, there’s more to the story. The productivity report analyzed traditional public schools and charter schools to determine which type of school gave the taxpayers the biggest bang for the buck. In making the comparison, the report used the scores of each segment on the national NAEP test, not Georgia’s standardized tests.

Why? Because Georgia’s tests are weak, receiving a score of F from nationally recognized organizations in terms of rigor. {Georgia was judged on tests it no longer uses, having rolled out the new Georgia Milestones this year.}

The analysis compared the two segments in terms of their NAEP points for every thousand dollars spent. The results were not even close; charters were found to be 30 percent more productive in math, and 31.4 percent more productive in reading than Georgia’s traditional public schools. In fact, Georgia’s charter schools ranked in the top 10 of all states in productivity. Finally, the report found Georgia’s taxpayers received a far better return on their financial investment from charters than they did from traditional public schools.

The final part of the story involves the answer to this question: “Why are there so few high quality national charter operators in Georgia? I believe the answer is very simple — Georgia is not very attractive to these operators from both a financial and regulatory perspective.

Unlike Washington, Chicago, or even San Antonio, Atlanta and Georgia do not offer money for start-up expenses or facilities; we fund operating expenses for charters at rate 30 percent less than traditional schools. We don’t allow for-profits to hold the charters, nor do we make it easy for operators to expand; we also limit their terms to five years, which makes it difficult to arrange facilities financing.

The day after the AJC published its story, Politico magazine published an article about charter schools in Washington, D.C., that did tell the entire story.  The article chronicles the historic failure rates in the district but states:  “D.C. stands out today because a whopping 44% of all its public school students—36,565 young people in 112 schools, are enrolled in charter schools, the highest percentage in the nation….It’s a figure that also stands out because D.C. charter school students consistently score higher on tests than those at traditional public schools in the capital…According to the Office of State Superintendent, 2014 marked the eighth year in a row that the number of charter school students who are proficient in multiple subjects has increased—and their number continues to exceed the state average…”

Why has D.C. succeeded while Georgia has lagged? First, charters have had an independent authorizer for over a decade; Georgia’s independent authorizer is only in its second year. Second, D.C. charters have ready access to start-up capital furnished by government, business and foundations. Third, D.C. charters receive a facilities allocation that is close to 100 percent of that received by traditional schools and can run as high as $1500 per student. Finally, D.C. charters receive operational funding that is close to 100 percent of the amounts received by district schools.

The final part of the story is the failure of the AJC to ask this question; How much longer are we willing to allow traditional public schools a monopoly on public education in Georgia, a monopoly that spends $17 billion annually? Despite those billions, we have 80 percent of low-income 8th graders not proficient in reading and math and barely 20 percent of all students — and 6 percent of black students — meeting the level of college readiness set by the ACT.

Reader Comments 0

125 comments
Astropig
Astropig

“D.C. stands out today because a whopping 44% of all its public school students—36,565 young people in 112 schools, are enrolled in charter schools, the highest percentage in the nation…"


I have to question the numbers here. New Orleans is essentially an almost all charter school system.Those numbers cited by Politico didn't look right to me.


The WaPo agrees- http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/new-orleans-leads-nation-in-percentage-of-public-charter-school-enrollment/2013/12/10/cb9c4ca6-61d6-11e3-bf45-61f69f54fc5f_story.html


Maybe DC schools will get there in time,but for now Nawlins is the capital of charters.


RuthBronstein
RuthBronstein

The biggest reason that charter schools are so successful doesn't have anything to do with what they have.  It's what they DON'T HAVE that makes all the difference.

JKToole
JKToole

@RuthBronstein Spoken like a true segregationist. "What year is this, Mr. Peabody? Sherman, it's 1955." Funny, where are all these studies showing 'charter schools are so successful"? Anytime you hear about charter school excellence it's from a policy wonk or businessman with a stake in it. In the U.S.A. I want to live in, it's the job of public schools to teach all children.

Now, in an unrelated matter: If we're going to discuss how a stereotype becomes a stereotype: "What is it they say about blondes?"

RuthBronstein
RuthBronstein

@JKToole @RuthBronstein  Actually JK, what I was talking about...that charter schools do not have...are TROUBLEMAKERS, the kids who disrupt class so much that they prevent anyone else from learning.  Charter schools can keep them out, and they come in all races, ethnicities, and gender.
Tells us a lot about your attitudes that you immediately fixate on race.  And regarding blondes, people can say whatever they like.  A dumb blonde is dumb, a smart blonde is smart...and it has nothing to do with hair color. 
Your last name seems to fit you rather well.

JKToole
JKToole


@RuthBronstein If you had 1/2 a brain, bigot, you'd know the John Kennedy Toole was a Pulitzer Prize winning novelist that wrote a hilarious novel about ... never mind.

I thought the stereotype regarding blondes was that they had more fun, dunce.

Tigz
Tigz

@RuthBronstein Agree 100%.  BUT I do have a couple of caveats. 
Some charter schools are intended for students that really won't amount to anything in life.  (I'm sorry, that is going to offend some people...but hey, we now live in the United States of the Easily Offended, so I thought I would make them happy.)

Here is an example of such a school:  My best friend's son went to a culinary and hospitality services charter school.  (yup, they have a charter school for everything).  Less than 5% went on to culinary school, or colleges that have majors in hospitality (restaurant and hotel management).  The school had horrible standardized test scores and the most are now working as fry cooks or front desk employees at the local Days Inn.  

That is not to say that these are not good professions.  BUT, they are professions that will not earn a living wage.

Now for the other end of the spectrum.  Let's say you have a very bright 4.0+ avg student.  Well, those college prep schools are full of them...to the point there are long waiting lists.  So what happens to those other very bright students that are left at the regular school?  You've taken away the other bright students and there is more problem students for teachers to deal with.  There will also be fewer AP or IB classes at those schools in areas that the student may wish to take classes. so *those* students end up with an inferior educational experience.


I really don't think charter schools are the answer except for in a few certain specific fields such as Visual Arts and Performing Arts.
 

The concept is a good one, but perhaps something closer to how European schools work where you go to school up to a certain year for the general-everybody-has-to-know curriculum, then in the upper years, based on where the student is headed whether it be College Prep, or Trade Schools (even specialized trade schools).  


TheLogic
TheLogic

Folks should realize also the charters schools have twice sometimes three times less funding than public schools. If they can do it with less why can't public schools? The sad thing is when the teacher union talks about funding it has nothing to do with students but everything to do with their salaries. They already get the whole freaking summer off. If you add their salaries up by the hour they're making what a doctor would make!! 

Falcaints
Falcaints

@Astropig @Falcaints @TheLogic I simply pointed out a falsehood in the comment, we do not and never have been paid for days we do not work.  I for one would love for school to be year round.  We work the calendar that others create for us, teachers in this state have little if any say on anything other than the actual teaching done in our classrooms.  This orchestrated campaign to paint teachers as lazy, overpaid, incompetent, and the sole reason for student success is just ridiculous.  If you want my schedule, become a teacher.

Astropig
Astropig

@JKToole @Astropig


I have and I do. I sell a premium product for a premium price (including to a lot of schoolteachers). Capitalism is as cool as The Fonz in a meatlocker.

Falcaints
Falcaints

@Astropig @Falcaints @TheLogic Were you picked on as a child by some teacher?  I was pointing out that the comment made by @TheLogic was false, they inferred that we have all this time off with pay.  Why exactly are so anti-teacher?  You do realize that teachers are never made part of the process which you violently dislike, we don't have a say in our pay, schedule, calendar, curriculum, ect.... There is no magic bullet for education, my students who come to school, do the work required, study and have a desire to learn do well.  Those who do none of those things don't succeed, it is that simple.  Your antipathy towards teachers is misplaced.

Quidocetdiscit
Quidocetdiscit

@TheLogic


" If you add their salaries up by the hour they're making what a doctor would make!! " 


LOL!!!!!  So... in your world a physician makes about $40 an hour?  (And I am at the top of the classroom teacher pay scale in my district.)

Quidocetdiscit
Quidocetdiscit

@Astropig @Falcaints @TheLogic


"NOBODY gets paid for days that they don't work.It's not some kind of sacrifice your making for the greater good."


No one is suggesting we are making some kind of "sacrifice" by not getting paid for the days we don't work.  


We are saying, STOP making it seem as though we DO get paid for the days we don't work.


See the difference?


It is relatively simple.

Astropig
Astropig

@Falcaints @Astropig @TheLogic


" we do not and never have been paid for days we do not work. "


Bulletin (From United Press International)


NOBODY gets paid for days that they don't work.It's not some kind of sacrifice your're making for the greater good.


popacorn
popacorn

@TheLogic

And you will have to pry their cold, dead fingers off of that gravy train before they consider what is best for students. 

TheLogic
TheLogic

@Falcaints @Astropig @TheLogic Again! That's simply not true. You are paid for 12 freaking months and attempting to lie about it is really sad on your part. By the way you're correct that Georgia don't have teacher unions but they have a huge liberal presence on social media slimming Republicans. 

TheLogic
TheLogic

@Falcaints @TheLogic I do know how things work! My wife is a school teacher! Its a fact school teachers get raises every single year up to 20 years based on the salary schedule. No matter how terrible the teacher may be. So its disingenuous for teachers to squeal about not getting a raise knowing full well they are. Its a fact that teacher salaries are prorated for 12 months. Which means you get the same salary month after month weather you're working or not. I'm sick and tired of politicians catering to teachers while ignoring others within government whose jobs are just as important. Jobs where your life is at risk! 


https://www.gadoe.org/Finance-and-Business-Operations/Budget-Services/Documents/FY2013_GaDOE_State_Salary_Schedule.pdf

Astropig
Astropig

@TheLogic @Falcaints


I'd give a thousand dollars (American money) for teachers to be put to work in a nursing home for a week,at the rate of pay that those folks make.They get spat upon,fought with,cursed,yelled at and things personal that are too vile to mention.They work days,nights,weekends,holidays and overnight. They have to be licensed and take continuing education and be compassionate,smart and in some cases,physically strong. They don't quite make a third of what teachers make.


Cops get shot at,firefighters get burned to death and marines get killed for no reason at all.


Every time I read this 10 months/12 months crap from teachers I have a little less respect for them.

TheLogic
TheLogic

@Quidocetdiscit @TheLogic Well perhaps teachers make more. Its disingenuous to say its not true of teacher salaries. Teachers only work 190 days a year and most not even 8 hr days. Factor in a $50,000 a year salary and that's over $32 an hr. I'm sorry that I don't feel sorry for teachers. Its just simply that I know the facts...

Astropig
Astropig

@Falcaints @TheLogic


175 days off a year is a good deal in anybody's book.I can assure you that cops,firefighters,nurses and doctors would kill somebody important to have that much downtime.


I've been hearing this shuck and jive about how "summer vacation doesn't really count because..." since I was 8 years old. It was BS then and is BS now. Just more rationalization from people that regularly compare themselves to doctors and whatnot.

TheLogic
TheLogic

@Falcaints @Astropig @TheLogic And not all teachers are what you described. Some are worth every penny. But you can't tell me that many especially in urban area's are simply there for the pay and time off....

Quidocetdiscit
Quidocetdiscit

@TheLogic @Falcaints @Astropig


It is not a lie.  You are merely making a common mistake by conjoining two separate issues.  Just because we can receive paychecks during the summer does not mean we are being PAID for summer hours. 


We are contracted for the days we work... that is it.  


We get PAID for 12 because our paychecks are spread out over 12 months.  In some states that is not an option.  During my first five years, I was only paid nine checks.  I had to save up to make it through the summer. 



Quidocetdiscit
Quidocetdiscit

@Astropig 


"I'm not anti- teacher,I'm anti-idiot. "


Ouch.  So hard NOT taking the swing...


Batta bing!

TheLogic
TheLogic

@Quidocetdiscit @TheLogic @Falcaints @Astropig But you said you don't get paid for time not worked. Most people would think teachers don't get paid by that statement. I'm sure those particular groups that you are a member of told you to word it that way. Its a fact teachers get a check every month. Enough said!!

sneakpeakintoeducation
sneakpeakintoeducation

@TheLogic @Falcaints @Astropig


@Logic


It's not too difficult to understand. Take the pay for the days worked  and instead of splitting it over 9 or 10 months, it is pro-rated over 12 months. So, yes, a  paycheck   is received every month for the 10 months worked. Example; paid $36k a year; the teacher will receive $3k a month instead of $3,600 for 10 months. And, yes, there may be a few teachers who value the pay and holidays over anything else at their workplace but that is the same in any industry; some people value some of their working conditions over others. Not that unusual. I don't understand your point. What is it you expect of teachers?

Falcaints
Falcaints

@TheLogic @Falcaints So your mad because they pay us over twelve months rather than 10? I also hate to break it to you but we don't get raises every year, in fact over the last six years when I have averaged 7 furlough days a year I have lost money.  As far as politicians catering to teachers, you can't be serious.  Republicans have consistently gutted funding for education, not only are we not catered to we are ignored.

Quidocetdiscit
Quidocetdiscit

@Astropig @TheLogic @Falcaints


Okay, let's take your little rant and break it down.


"I'd give a thousand dollars (American money) for teachers to be put to work in a nursing home for a week,at the rate of pay that those folks make.They get spat upon,fought with,cursed,yelled at and things personal that are too vile to mention."


So do teachers, and they have to actually TEACH on top of that.


"They work days,nights,weekends,holidays and overnight."


Aside from the overnight part, so do teachers, they just don't get paid for it. (Unless you get trapped in an Atlanta ice storm, then you might work overnight as well.)


"They have to be licensed and take continuing education and be compassionate,smart and in some cases,physically strong. "


So do teachers, (well aside from the physically strong part.)



"They don't quite make a third of what teachers make."


Again, they do not have to try and TEACH content to those they care for, which is part  of the difference. They also do not have to have a college degree,. or as many teachers need these days, and ADVANCED degree.


Besides, really, this has what to do with the price of tea in China?    Why are we comparing TEACHERS to these jobs?  Why not just ANY other job?  Shouldn't you be vilified because YOU make more than they do and YOU don't have vile things thrown at you?


For some reason you seem to be blaming teachers for the low pay of nursing home workers.  I do not believe TEACHERS set the pay scale for nursing home workers.


A teacher points out the TRUTH about teacher salaries in this state, and you try to guilt them into shutting up by bringing up the plight of others who are underpaid for their service. 



"Cops get shot at,firefighters get burned to death and marines get killed for no reason at all."


Yes, and construction workers fall to their deaths, military personell get killed in action, zoo keepers get malled by lions, choir boys get molested, and bank tellers get robbed.  Your point? 


Some wackadoodoole decides to go out with a band and take some poor Marines with him and you are going to  use that to engage in teacher bashing?  Really!  Somehow teachers should sit down and shut up because someone else dies at the hands of a nutcase?  ?????  Have you forgotten about the teachers who have died by being "shot for no reason at all" in the last few  years? Are you really going to play the "These jobs are more dangerous than your job therefore you should shut up and take it" game here? 



"Every time I read this 10 months/12 months crap from teachers I have a little less respect for them."


What CRAP was that?  The part when someone pointed out it was not true that we get paid for 12 months work even though we only get paid for our contracted days?  Somehow pointing that out equates to CRAP for you?



Don't worry, seeing as you have decided to use the deaths of Marines to bash teachers,  I have determined I cannot have any less respect for you.


Quidocetdiscit
Quidocetdiscit

@TheLogic @Quidocetdiscit


The average physician salary exceeds $40 a hour. by quite a bit.  It is easy to find out.  Just Google it. 



",,,,and most not even 8 hr days"


We are contracted for 8 hours a day.  MOST of the teachers I have met work far more than that.  I do not understand how you can state that most work LESS than their contracted hours.  How do you figure that? Does you wife work less that 8 hours a day?  BTW, for a job that requires a college degree (and frequently a graduate level degree as well in many districts) $32 an hour is really not that much.  Plus, most teachers are not at the $50,000 level  until they have been in the classroom for many years.  


Did anyone ask you to feel sorry for teachers?  No, they just asked you to be clear about the "facts" you posted. 

Quidocetdiscit
Quidocetdiscit

@TheLogic @Falcaints


"I do know how things work! My wife is a school teacher! Its a fact school teachers get raises every single year up to 20 years based on the salary schedule. "


You may know how it works for YOUR district, but different districts have different pay scales.

In my district, we get raises every FEW years (if there is money in the budget) based on the salary scale.  We also used to get occasional Cost of Living raises, but we haven't had one of those in years.


"It is a fact that teacher salaries are prorated for 12 months."


If that was what you had said originally, then I am sure no one would have felt the need to clarify, but it wasn't.  Instead your post was unclear, and when someone tried to point that out, you replied, "You are paid for 12 freaking months and attempting to lie about it is really sad on your part."You could simply have clarified your point, but instead you decided to get nasty.


And as for politicians "catering" to teachers...no where I have worked.  Politicians do not seem to be  in the business to actually "catering" to anyone other than those they think can get them elected or reelected.


Falcaints
Falcaints

@TheLogic The whole teacher union and pay thing is irrelevant in this state since we don't have any "teacher unions".  We don't get paid for time off by the way, we are paid for the number of days we are contracted to work (normally 190, but in my case considerably less during the last six years of furlough days.) You should really know something about how things work before you comment on them.

JKToole
JKToole

@Astropig Then by all means. quit your b*tchen, Porky and become a teacher or negotiate a better price for your product or fee for your service. After all, that's capitalism.

Tigz
Tigz

@Astropig @Falcaints @TheLogic In my opinion (and yes, I realize that it is indeed my opinion) teachers are more important than doctors.  They hold the the future of our children and our country in their hands....that is, if the student is willing to learn, and the parent is supportive and involved in the child's education. (By the way, a teacher's salary, even hourly, is nowhere near what a doctor makes)

You want to complain about teachers?  Why don't you try being a teacher for a while?  Try putting up with disrespectful children and teens.  Try to deal with Mr. Smith and how little Jane or Johnny is the perfect child and it must be the teacher's fault if something is wrong. Try to deal with students Jack, Mark, and Abe who are more concerned with what drugs they will be doing tonight and who they are going to rob to get that money, than they are with their math class.  Try to deal with Mary who is being raped and beaten at home by her mama's boyfriend...but she is too scared to tell anything to anyone, and her grades are falling through the floor.  THEN on top of that, try dealing with the administration who wants your students to have better grades and do better on standardized testing.


Yes, Mr Astropig and Mr TheLogic, since you have all the answers, please step into the shoes of a teacher and teach for a year or two, then tell us how they don't deserve a decent wage and how they don't need some down time.


As for me, I could not be a teacher.  Students would drive me crazy within a month.  I'd be scrunched down whimpering in the janitor's closet and they would send the men with the white coats to carry me away.


So, yeah....I have a lot of respect for good teachers.

Intteach
Intteach

There is no status quo anymore - almost all school districts are either IE2 or a charter system now. They almost all negotiate their terms with the state. Almost 200 individualized contracts for how to educate our students. We'll see how that works out.

Numacs
Numacs

e from Mr. Delk's analysis: "...when all sources of funding are compared to the funding available to traditional public schools...." So he's basically saying PILE OF MONEY C divided by the number of charter students VS. PILE OF MONEY T divided by the number of traditional students. Such a comparison is nonsense: it assumes that the two populations are identically served in scale and scope. Well, the numbers on the front end of that comparison are going to be pretty small still, with very few outliers in categories such as SpEd (ASD, EBD, students with cognitive impairments, students with physical impairments). Traditional schools serve thousands of these students, and funding for them is considerably substantial. Do the charter schools all serve breakfast, as many traditional schools do? Do all of the charter schools transport their students to and from school? The Drew Charter School -- often held up as the epitome of all that is good about charter schools -- does not provide transportation for its students. Meanwhile, on the charter side, does the report consider gifts and grants as part of "funding" or are they considered "ancillary fundraising" (often kept separate from the operations account)? At schools such as Drew, these are no small amounts. With traditional schools, the scale of federal monies (Title 1 and Dept. of Agriculture School nutrition funding) would quickly skew such a simplistic comparison found in the UofArk report. Of course, the federal funding is different. Yes, the local funding is different. Yes, the facilities funding is different. But If charter schools wish to be funded just like traditional schools, then they should do ALL THE THINGS that traditional schools do. Well, Mr. Delk, I bet that somewhere in there is where your 35.3% difference is.

teacherandmom
teacherandmom

Less funding?  Not sure that is correct.  Charter schools in GA earn the same FTE money/student as public schools. 

Mirva
Mirva

This article to me was a “well, duh” moment. Charter schools appeal mainly to middle and upper middle class parents of children who have no learning or behavioral issues.  These children are by definition, far cheaper and easier to educate.  Parents with children who have 504’s or IEP’s are often turned off by charter schools which run the spectrum from openly rejecting these students to ever so gently encouraging parents to look elsewhere.  Some claim not to have adequate services for these children or declare their “charter” will not allow them to differentiate their services or standards.  Some will take special needs children, but only certain kinds and only so many.  Show me a charter school who takes ALL students in a geographic area- not a lottery system, but all the kids- and they will do no better than the school down the street. 


Astropig
Astropig

@Mirva


"charter schools which run the spectrum from openly rejecting these students to ever so gently encouraging parents to look elsewhere.  "




Against state law. In our litigious society, I'm sure rejecting or suggesting by any charter would be met with swift legal action and would be blasted out in this space posthaste.



irishmafia1457
irishmafia1457

Question ..... the education establishment, and of course politicians swear that universal pre-school is the answer to the sorry state of education in this country. .. Correct me if I'm mistaken, but Georgia has spent several hundred billion dollars thereabouts on pre school through the lottery the last 20 + years. Where are the results? Have SAT scores risen ? Has the graduation rate spiked upwards? Are students more prepared for college? Do more students come to Kindergarten prepared to do better academic work and follow rules?  The answer is pretty obvious ... Pre school in the many areas is nothing more than free daycare. How often is the curriculum checked in these schools ? How many times a year does the state/county send someone to observe the teaching methods and instruction ? How many of the neighborhood and church pre k programs are nothing more than a lottery funded day care service ? Interesting that all the experts quoted and appearing on TV/Radio have a vested interest in the Pre K programs continuing and receiving more dollars   The only answer is much more parental involvement especially in the poor areas, when parents make education the number one priority the children will respond, until then  just throwing money into the wind 

AvgGeorgian
AvgGeorgian

@irishmafiahigs


The buck starts and ends at the top. The politicians handpick the state BOE, and the legislators  and state DOE make the laws/rules that schools have to adhere to. Teachers carry out the process which is a mess with poor planning, structure, processes, training and assessment. 


Instead of the folks in charge stepping up to lead in improving education for all Georgia students, they are wasting time and money on private school tax credits for the wealthy, charters that are failing to provide any blueprint for success, and pushing for vouchers. It's like the leaders have no idea what to do, have given up, and are only trying to help a few chosen groups.

Point
Point

@irishmafiahigs The state mandates the Pre-K curriculum, not sure if its ever been updated.

AvgGeorgian
AvgGeorgian

@irishmafiahigs


Point taken. Quality is king. Intersting reading 


"So while universal pre-school for four-year-olds is a nice idea, perhaps it would make more sense to spend some of this money targeting the neediest children with programmes that start much sooner. With so much inequality in America, why hand out yet another benefit to middle and upper-class parents? But therein lies the problem: rich, white voters are not too keen on programmes that help mostly poor black and Latino families, as was seen in San Antonio when a city-wide experiment in pre-school was put to a public vote." http://www.economist.com/blogs/democracyinamerica/2014/02/pre-school-education


The charter school movement to cater to kids that are already suceeding seems to be in direct opposition to solving the "failing" school problem.

AvgGeorgian
AvgGeorgian

@flaneur_ @AvgGeorgian


Way to count!  'I'm guessing I would probably rather have my life than the life of someone who comments on it.


PS. Am actually at a party right now (my friends got a kick out of your post), but my brain needs a lot of extra exercise to stay sharp(blogs help) and this took about 5 minutes - not to think, to type - bad hands. Enjoy your night.

flaneur_
flaneur_

@AvgGeorgian

Sixteen of the sixty-three comments are from you? Have you absolutely no friends or social life? Even if you had something intelligent to say (and you apparently do not) do you think that's a healthy situation?  

redweather
redweather

@irishmafiahigs The long-term value of pre-k has been studied extensively, although I don't know if anyone has studied its effects on SAT scores.  It looks good from a cost benefit analysis as well as a return on investment analysis in the following ways:

1. reduced grade repetition

2. reduced use of special education

3. increased high school graduation rate

4. increased college attendance rate

5. reduce use of welfare

6. reduced crime and contact with criminal justice system

Point
Point

@AvgGeorgian @irishmafiahigs That's just the selling point to get their foot in the door.  School choice has nothing to do with educating children.  It's about using public funds as their profit.


Remember how there was so much posturing politically about food stamps?  Several states enacted policy to reduce benefits.  Then Walmart posted a loss and realized loss of food stamps cut into their bottom line.  Suddenly, no one is talking about food stamps anymore.  Yay, big business rules!!

visiting
visiting

@AvgGeorgian @irishmafiahigs We are the last so-called "developed" nation on earth to condemn children to earning thousands of dollars less over their lifetime simply for being born in the wrong ZIP code. Every other nation -- particularly the ones beating us by two to three grade levels in math and science -- allows the money to follow the child. The student is allowed to go to any accredited school -- private, public, Catholic, Baptist, Jewish -- through a state-issued voucher. Look at Germany, Belgium, Ireland, Canada, Great Britain.


Finally, the school choice proponent nails it: Despite spending MORE PER STUDENT THAN ANY OTHER COUNTRY, "... we have 80 percent of low-income 8th graders not proficient in reading and math and barely 20 percent of all students — and 6 percent of black students — meeting the level of college readiness set by the ACT."


Level the existing public school buildings and create some nice new parks for youngsters to enjoy. Then build a real education system that produces leaders. Don't give the hopelessly corrupt, cheating public education lobby another dime. They'll just funnel it to political cronies and the multi-billion dollar school construction business. 


Puzzled as to how to pull this off? Ask Germany. Ask Japan.

Quidocetdiscit
Quidocetdiscit

@Astropig @Quidocetdiscit @flaneur_


Just another nonsense response.  Care to post anything that supports your comment about my "fixation"?   No, just more random insults.  I think I have said this before...you used to actually engage in debates.  Lately, you seem to be taking lessons from the hit and run posters on here and just resorting to pot shots.  It is disappointing.

irishmafia1457
irishmafia1457

@redweather @irishmafiahigs The point being that 1-6  none of that has happened in Georgia ( or any other state)  despite spending billions of dollars. "studied extensively"  I have seen many reports and again almost 00% have a vested interest in making Pre- k look like a solution to the problem 

AvgGeorgian
AvgGeorgian

@flaneur_ @AvgGeorgian


My guests are gone, the abode has been neatened,  now where were... Ah yes, thank you again for your heartfelt  concern about my health. Your compassion for fellow posters and all school children is truly touching.


I can assure you that the state of my health is helped rather than hindered by commenting here. Not particularly interested in TV these days .


Please understand that my intent is to argue my position using data, logic and reason, with like minded people no matter what their position. If you you are not such a person, I can surely see why you might be annoyed by my posts. If your mind is made up based on your opinion and only what you already know, you can be sure I am not writing to you - even my attempted humorous barbs are meant for those other than the apparent recipients. 


I hope you enjoy posting and being in the mix here in the arena of educational ideas.

AvgGeorgian
AvgGeorgian

@Astropig @visiting @AvgGeorgian @irishmafiahigs


I called Germany and Japan but got no answer. Please post your their performance results, your understanding of how they pull this off, and your recommendations for K-12 in GA in light of that. Thanks in advance.

AvgGeorgian
AvgGeorgian

@irishmafiahigs @redweather


20097?(a poster) posted a link to a story by the economist that argued for less money spent on already high performing kids with resources and spending instead on nursery age education for the less resourceful. That would be a worthy experiment for a few charter schools, and wouldn't even cost as much as the private school tax credit for mostly wealthy families. 

popacorn
popacorn

@Quidocetdiscit

You DO mention middle school boy's locker rooms a lot....

Where is Dr Freuda when we need her?

Wascatlady
Wascatlady

And don't forget the time and training for the " SLOs for everyone". " no, next year we are cutting back on the SLOs!"

Quidocetdiscit
Quidocetdiscit

@flaneur_



There are folks on here who post far more often than AvgGeorgian and whose posts consists of little more than petty snarking, but you decide to scold and insult someone who actually provides data, links to studies and thought provoking commentary (whether you happen to agree with him/her or not.)  


Frankly, I prefer reasoned content to snark, even when the poster has a different point of view.  At least I know I am engaging with an adult and not someone who seems unable to rise above the level of discourse in a middle school boys' locker room.