27 Minnesota schools shed low-performance labels

  • Article by: Kim McGuire , Star Tribune
  • Updated: October 1, 2013 - 11:25 PM

In second year of a new system, they showed improvement.

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  • Comments

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EleanoreOct. 1, 1310:15 AM

as arbitrary and unfounded as the flowing standards that put them on the list. No wonder there's not much comment here, this means little except to the 27 schools.

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iouzmnOct. 1, 1310:28 AM

Lower the bar and all the kids will be above average.

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FrankLOct. 1, 1310:46 AM

So how did they close the gap? By raising the bottom or by lowering the top students?

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circleoflifeOct. 1, 1310:46 AM

“Today’s release is about hard work taking place every single day in our schools to ensure the success of each child,” said Education Commissioner Brenda Cassellius. This sentence is offensive. I guess all you people prior to this weren't working hard enough. Now that there are new standards, the kids are working harder.

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tacotonyOct. 1, 1311:02 AM

Pretty negative comments for a very positive story.

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akamurphOct. 1, 1311:54 AM

I wouldn't call it negative comments, more like common sense. They lower the standards and all of a sudden 27 schools who were low-performing are now performing well... common sense.

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bigtmnOct. 1, 1312:17 PM

I didn't count 27 schools in the article.

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lendleasezOct. 1, 1312:51 PM

How many schools still on the low achievement list and which ones are they?

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EleanoreOct. 1, 13 2:05 PM

To say the standards were loweerd is not accurate. They were changed. That's different. The signifcance here and what you would have seen before was functioning schools once seen as doing the best they could with what they had, suddenly claimed to be "failing". Now you see 27 schools after the state has thrown more money at them and told them who to give it to, suddenly seenas "not failing". The schools may be slightly changed from the experience, but every day is just the same, students and staff go to school and do the best they can with what they have, and the state has no more role in claiming failing or not failing in that other than setting the reimbursement and spending standards each individual district is set with. Victory or shell game? Minnesota can decide for itself.

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swmnguyOct. 2, 13 8:05 AM

The Minneapolis elementary school my kids went to is listed as a "Focus" school. The middle school my younger kid is still in is "Celebration-Eligible" now. The high school where my son is appears to be OK.

I saw that on the grid. But I didn't need to click on the links to know that. I've known that elementary school for 13 years, and it may be better today than it was then; ratings to the wayside. The middle school is just the same as it's been for the 6 years I've known it, despite having doubled in enrollment. The high school is the same as it's been for 30 years, which is to say, very good.

It's demographics. In the area served by the elementary school, families with young kids are not doing well in the ongoing Depression. In the area served by the middle school, it's a slightly higher middle-class region. A number of kids who had been going to private or parochial schools are now going to the public middle school because their families can't afford tuition. South High has been what it is for decades, and that's a good thing.

The schools reflect the community they are in. Like all institutions they have some absurd bureaucracy. Like everything else in America these days, they've adopted the corporate structure and corporate finance hocus-pocus, so they have battalions of highly-paid administrators, bean-counters and administrators. But when you get to the individual schools, things are lean; too lean; yet teachers, principals and kids are hard at work every day.

If the kids come from a stable household, they are doing fine. If they don't, they aren't. You can superimpose an income data trend map over a school district map and pick out which schools are doing better and which ones worse.

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