Thursday, September 26, 2002

Public School Reform

I found the following Opinion/Editorial in USA Today: Remodel public schools into knowledge factories.

Public schools would do well to emulate today's most modern factories: efficient, clean, productive and accountable.

Like factories, schools should be held responsible for outcomes, which requires clear goals and standards. If a chip-production plant fails to achieve its goals, the management doesn't blame the chips or make the employees work longer hours, the way some push for more schooling. Instead, the managers examine the factory's procedures and make necessary corrections.

Our economy can no longer afford schools that pick winners and losers. What we need is to produce highly educated, well-rounded students based on the standards and approaches used by our most modern and effective factories.

While reforming public education is a great idea, from experience I can say that the majority of students at public schools don't strive to learn and excel--the struggling students are elated with barely passing grades, and the gifted students are satisfied with whatever grade will maintain their 4.0. The idea of non-compulsory attendence to some schools is a great idea, forming the basis of Signature School's belief in student choice. In order for Sig School to excel, it depends on the enthusiasm of the students...public schools must develop this mentality too.

Sig School is a pioneer in charter schools. Hopefully, eventually the public school system will be reformed to sort the people who want to achieve and those who don't--then educated all those willing to their highest potential.


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