Friday, February 10, 2006

"At all costs and with little sense"

Over at the Examiner Jonetta Rose Barras, who is heard on WAMU radio's "D.C. Politics Hour", has a great opinion piece about the state of District schools.
Residents think there is a direct correlation between funding and student performance. But the past - and the CGCS report - offers testimony to the contrary. And if folks are expecting new facilities to translate into higher academic achievement, my friend up the block has a bridge he knows you'll just love.

Consider these facts: The system has one of the highest per pupil spending levels in the country. Yet most DCPS students consistently score at or below the "basic" level in reading and math. Only 32 percent of the per pupil spending is for classroom instruction. And despite a $1 billion budget, salaries for school-based personnel "appears to be lower than most cities," according to the CGCS.

DCPS officials and the D.C. Board of Education will say special education and transportation are sapping their resources. The CGCS agrees. For more than 10 years, District boards of education have lamented this fact; little has been done to resolve the problem.

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