Monday, June 24, 2019

John Thompson: Challenges to watch as OKCPS 'pathway' is implemented

Challenges to watch as OKCPS 'pathway' is implemented

Challenges to watch as OKCPS ‘pathway’ is implemented

The battle over Classen SAS High School and Northeast Academy grabbed most of the attention during the June 10 Oklahoma City Public Schools board meeting, but new, complex challenges were also revealed. The Board heard a Planning Department report on the number of OKCPS graduates who require remediation in college.
These sad outcomes, as well as new disclosures on the need for the district to take over Seeworth Academy, an alternative school, should prompt an open, evidence-based discussion of complex education policy dilemmas. If we needed more proof, the reorganization of the OKCPS administration was announced only a week later.
OKCPS has plenty on its plate, but I believe the district won’t improve without engaging in transparent, research-based discussions on what it will actually take to provide our kids with the education they deserve. Below is my advice.

Good news, bad news

First, the good news is that the OKCPS dropout rate has fallen, down to less than 2 percent in 2017. (See the PDF embedded below.) The bad news is that the use of “credit recovery” programs, across the nation, means we can’t tell how much of the decline is due to real improvements and how much is due to “passing kids on,” regardless of what they haven’t learned. The worst news in the recent OKCPS report is that nearly two-thirds of OKCPS graduates who attend college need remediation.
Since 2002-03, the college-going rates, with or without remediation, have improved for CONTINUE READING: Challenges to watch as OKCPS 'pathway' is implemented