Hippie rhetoric... dumbing down... will never, ever be the right answer...
Initially city officials considered basing the whole grade on a peer-group comparison. But Kati Haycock, director of the Education Trust, a Washington research group, warned them off, saying that would send the message that there were different standards for children of different backgrounds.An interesting article, especially when considered in light of the Toronto District Board's recent initiative to explore "race based" schooling.
“We argued as strongly as we could that that’s a terrible idea,” Ms. Haycock said. “In the real world, once kids grow up, they are not just compared to kids that just graduated from the barrio.”
There are, however, still a few bugs in the system.
The decision to reward schools for advancing the neediest students produced some counterintuitive results. South Bronx Academy for Applied Media, listed by the state as one of its most violent schools, is rated by the city as an A.An old song comes to mind, "When will they ever learn..."
It fared well on the report card because while just 17 percent of its students met grade level standards on the state reading test, more than 63 percent had improved from last year.