Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Oregonian as an education watchdog - who would have thought?

Thanks to the Oregonian - Betsy Hammond - the PPS has determined to do things right. New initiatives designed to changed the 'low graduation rates' are being proposed and hopefully fully implemented to lower that statistic based upon substantive changes in policies and not manipulation of data. [Portland Public Schools pledges big changes to raise its 'unacceptably low' graduation rate].

The Oregonian rightfully boasts: "The initiatives correspond directly with the findings of a June 2012 investigative report by The Oregonian that exposed systemic problems in Portland's system of getting students to complete high school."

No changes would have been likely but for the Oregonian. But we need them to keep one eye open.


  1. Poor high school completion rates are not news (in Portland or anywhere else). The Oregonian, in its steadfast support of Betsy Hammond, has served to degrade not only PPS, but the alternative schools who have stepped in where public schools step out. Furthermore, in her writing of alternative programs, Hammond has repeatedly shown her disdain for such programs and has repeatedly gotten the facts wrong. When the Oregonian Editorial Board is informed of these inaccuracies, they blindly back her.

    I agree that PPS has a lot to do - we have, as a society, divested in our public education systems both in our lack of funds and in the overwhelming numbers of families pulling their children from public schools and turning to private or charter options. The need for alternatives is increasing every year. Betsy Hammond would do well to become better informed on those alternatives and see, first hand, how alternative programs rescue the castoffs from the comprehensive schools.

  2. Poor completion rates are not news - in Portland or anywhere else.

    Hammond repeatedly betrays her ignorance of the real work that is being done in alternative programs as she "reports" more opinion than fact.

    Yes, PPS needs help, but Hammond's stone throwing doesn't serve anyone.