Thursday, October 13, 2011

PPS outstanding - like a sore thumb

Two Oregonian articles showcases the sad state of PPS. In the story on Aloha High school we have the chance to compare PPS to two other school districts in the area - Hillsboro and Beaverton. While there may be something to cheer about at Aloha High - take a peek at the school districts and schools referenced in the article. There are some schools doing well, but way too many not doing well at all.

PPS seems to excel at not doing well. The low percentage of graduates and high percentage of dropouts has PPS as outstanding in a field of low performance. The US Education Secretary Duncan in the other Oregonian article hits on the PPS's education system, specifically its graduation rate of 54%:
""If young people drop out of high school today, there are no jobs out there for them, none. We are condemning people to poverty and social failure," he said. "We all have to be working to get those graduation rates to 100 percent as fast as we can... You can have the best third grade test scores in the world, but if you have a 54 percent graduation rate, we're not there yet. That is an issue that has to be faced with brutal honesty... When you have these devastatingly high dropout rates, that's untenable."
  "I don't think you can have a great city unless you have a great education system, and I would urge the city to take that on directly."
I wonder when Portlandia will wake up and grasp that education has to be the city's priority. Aren't parents, with an ability to choose, that send their children to substandard public schools impairing their children's economic future?

Aren't charter and private schools the better choices? But, leaving children in a substandard school system because of a misplaced belief in the 'benefits' of public education is plain wrong.