First let me start by saying Florida’s school grading system is whacked. It’s been adjusted, bent, warped and messed with to the point that, well it’s whacked.
Next I don’t doubt there are some good things going on there. I can’t imagine a staff of teachers either not working hard or not caring. Yet despite all this I feel comfortable saying the KIPP impact school is a colossal failure.
Grades are out and KIPP is projected to be a D, now they will call it a C because friend of KIPP Gary Chartrand voted to lie to the citizens of Florida and make it so schools can only drop one letter grade. Hmm, since he has a lot riding on the success of the KIPP School I wonder if that played into his decision.
But Chris you just said the grades should be meaningless? How does that register? Well it’s because of the grading system that many considered the schools on the north side of town failing which led to KIPP coming here in the first place, well that and a million bucks form the aforementioned Chartrand. KIPP can’t benefit form the grading system then turn a blind eye to it when it is inconvenient.
Worse however is the KIPP school was supposed to be a savior, to take those poor black kids out of poverty and give them the education they deserved and like it or not the grading system is the one that we have right now and its says the KIPP school isn’t delivering the promised goods.
Some of you might say because KIPP was allowed to expand this two letter grade drop is just an expansion hiccup. To which I would reply, well why were they allowed to expand in the first place without proving sustained productivity and furthermore since this would be their second expansion, shouldn’t they have know what the hiccups would have been and been able to mitigate them?
Then lets not forget the KIPP school benefits from selection bias, counseling our poor performers, putting requirements on parents and a budget that sees them spend about a third more per child. Yes friends that’s right, they spend about a third more per child, and despite all these huge advantages their grades have gone from worst school in Northeast Florida to a B back down to an F.
Charter schools are not the cure to the problems facing education and the KIPP school which none of the top private or public schools emulate is definitely not the answer even though it was sold as such.
Once again our poorest students pay the price of an education reform movement, which thinks it is more important that they are right, than to have the right answer.