I know the President and Secretary Duncan keep on saying they don’t think charter schools are the answer, only part of the answer, and that they are only talking about “good” charter schools.
Well, the President highlighted one of those supposedly “good” charter schools in his speech. Here is what he said:
So, no, I don’t support all charter schools, but I do support good charter schools. I’ll give you an example. There’s a charter school called Mastery in Philadelphia. And in just two years, three of the schools that Mastery has taken over have seen reading and math levels nearly double –- in some cases, triple. Chaka Fattah is here, so he knows what I’m talking about. One school called Pickett went from just 14 percent of students being proficient in math to almost 70 percent. (Applause.) Now — and here’s the kicker — at the same time academic performance improved, violence dropped by 80 percent -– 80 percent. And that’s no coincidence. (Applause.)
Now, if a school like Mastery can do it, if Pickett can do it, every troubled school can do it.
The problem is that Pickett did it with a 42% student attrition rate, which I also pointed out when TIME wrote a laudatory article about the school earlier this year.
Come on! Kicking-out “low-performing” students is an effective way to increase school scores, but is that really the model the President wants to raise up?