Thursday, October 1, 2015
Test results show inferiority of RI schools a reality
CHARLES FISHER made these points in this September 4 letter in the Dispatch/Argus."A petition requesting the resignation of Rock Island School District 41 sitting board member Jim Bishop is circulating after he elected to send his child to a Pleasant Valley school. The petition decries "the perception that our district is in some way inferior". ..... If this perception extends to test scores, then Rock Island schools are demonstrably inferior. The latest 2013 data for Rock Island High School indicate that only 37.9 percent of students can pass the state English test, and only 28.8 percent achieve proficiency in math. Pleasant Valley respectively placed 91.3 percent and 89.3 percent in 2011, top marks for the region. The RIHS scores are the worst in the Quad-Cities, and come with the highest monetary costs -- a failure by any measure. ..... Rather than take steps to correct a failed bureaucracy, this petition seeks to punish a single individual for exercising a legal freedom of choice. Were the RIHS scores equal to Pleasant Valley, there would be no complaint. This is sadly not the case, and envy is hardly disguised. ..... RIHS joins Rock Island Academy, Edison Jr. High, and Washington Jr. High as schools that are so profoundly inferior that they should be immediately closed, as their state academic watch status strongly suggests. Their continued operation severely damages our community, and this petition's aim to "kill the messenger" does nothing but entrench an inferiority that is obvious to all."