Utterly Meaningless » Blog Archive » LAKE WOBEGONE, TX

    Filed at 11:36 am under by dcobranchi

    …where the “Education Miracle” dictates that no child can drop out. EdSec Paige’s old stomping grounds continues to dig itself a hole ever deeper. The NYT picks up the scandal today on how Houston school principals were pressured by Paige and his successor to “meet the numbers” or get fired. The principals met the numbers by lying about dropout rates. One profiled school lost more than 70% of its freshman class before graduation, yet still reported zero dropouts. All of this might seem trivial. After all, what does it really matter what the dropout rate in Houston is? Except that the Texas Miracle, and in particular the Houston Independent School District, were the model for NCLB. Worth a read.

    One Response to “LAKE WOBEGONE, TX”

    Comment by
    August 14th, 2003
    at 8:40 am

    Everyone I know here in Houston has absorbed the idea somehow that Houston schools are a disaster, but I haven’t heard anyone say anything about it unless I mention it first. I generally feel like the kid who pointed out the novel way the Emperor chose to get an allover suntan.

    All I have to do is to discuss what I and they think education is and/or should be, and contrast that ideal with what is *really* going on around here. The response is usually a sort of wistful, pathetic “I know you’re right, BUT….” Noone seems to defend the schools here… but they send their kids there anyway, why? It’s apathy, it’s the belief that they’re good people and will beat the odds, it’s trying to justify the expensive home they bought because they heard it was near good schools, it’s the irrational, fascist faith in government as some sort of cosmic New Age Force that will eventually make everything work out just fine.

    Thanks, y’all, for sharing my frustration.