As soon as the DOE began its report cards a few years ago, it seemed clear to me that one of the main functions of the cards was to target which schools could be shut down within two years based on low grades, and then replaced with charter schools or small high schools.
Sunday, September 06, 2009
Ruminations on School Report Card Grades
Susan Crawford to the NYC Education News listserve:
When the DOE was threatened with a lawsuit last spring for trying to shut down schools to replace them with charter schools without approval from District CECs, it backed off. Instead, it has now simply taken to moving in on whatever schools it deems "undercapicity" even if it means taking away classrooms, lunchrooms, and libraries from the "host" schools and leaving them grossly over-crowded, rather than trying to shut them down.
So, from that perspective, the school grades are no longer needed for real estate grabs. But wait,
surely they could be put to some other use! Of course, it's an election year, so make the state tests easier (as they were in 2005), give most schools A's and B's so parents (but more importantly, the non-parent voters out there, who outnumber parents) will think the system has
really gotten turned around. But wait, one problem ... now that all those teachers need bonuses --33% more than budgeted for.
Ms. Forte of DOE says the extra $13 million has found "in central." I couldn't help but wonder if it was found sitting on someone's desk in the form of a check from some large donor whose principal interest this year is in securing another form of real estate -- City Hall.