In the middle of Wash. Post’s Sunday look at CT and No Child Left Behind is this:
[State Schools Commissioner] Sternberg concedes that Connecticut’s achievement gap “looks horrendous” but blames demographics. Black students, who predominantly live in big cities, are performing about the same as black students in other states, she said. White students, who tend to live in the suburbs, are faring significantly better than white students nationwide.
Is she saying they’re doing about as well as they can?
Because actually, according to NAEP, achievement for African-American youngsters in CT is only about average — and that’s not an impressive average — so the state’s claim that they have everything in hand deserves a bit more scrutiny…
More to the point, if it’s the position of CT that minority kids can’t learn as much, or are doing about as well as can be expected, because of demographics they should be forthright about it with state taxpayers, especially minority ones. For a much better look at CT and minority achievement (and some actual scrutiny) there in particular, this NYT story from last weekend is must-reading. Finally, this is a very profound statement, why couldn’t reporter Michael Dobbs be bothered to unpack it and provide some context rather than sinking it in the middle of a pretty pedestrian political piece? Plenty of folks with strong views on both sides, and some data even…it really cuts to the nub of the issue.