Monday, April 26, 2010

Discussion on creaming

This discussion of creaming is worth further exploration, both because it's an issue for charter schools, but also because it's an issue among ALL public schools.  The irony and hypocrisy I noted above about Perkins and FDA are true across the NYC -- and most other -- public school systems, as most have special, selective schools for the "best" students.  In fact, charter schools are the ONLY system of public schools that AREN'T allowed to be selective!


To some extent, I have no problem with this (though it pains me to say it).  If the reality is that there are only enough high quality teachers and schools to give a high-quality education to, say, 20% of students in a particular area (almost always an area with mostly low-income, minority families, of course), then why on earth would you waste those precious slots on students and/or parents who are unmotivated or have fallen so far behind that it's unlikely they can ever catch up?  It sounds cruel and immoral to talk about this kind of triage, but in reality what's cruel and immoral is the system itself.  Once that system is in place, the hard decisions must inevitably follow.


Of course, the real solution is to fix the system so that EVERY child gets a high-quality education, but we're many, many years away from that…

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