Clayton’s accreditation has been revoked

The Clayton County School System has lost its accreditation:

The Clayton County school system will lose its accreditation in the next school year, the National Accreditation Commission decided today.

The commission, meeting in Chicago, voted unanimously to revoke the 52,800-student district’s accreditation on Sept. 1.

The only chance the district has to hold on to accreditation is to meet nine mandates by September, but that is highly unlikely, said Mark Elgart, president and chief executive officer of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

“I do believe unless outside significant intervention is provided and support is provided, the system does not have the ability to meet nine requirements,” said Elgart, whose Southern Association is a member of the accreditation group.

60 comments

  1. John Konop says:

    This is the result of the failed NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND one size fit all education.

    We need a new direction in high school education, away from the heavy handed, one-size-fits-all No Child Left Behind system that has failed students and strained tax payers.
    We need Governor Perdue and Lieutenant Governor Cagle to step up and lead, instead of rubber-stamping failed gimmick programs like Kathy Cox’s Math 123—we need real solutions.

    More Choice, Not Less

    Why not coordinate the current university, junior college system, certificate programs, and technical colleges with our high schools? Georgia’s only nationally-ranked high school academic program—the math program used in Cherokee, Cobb, and Fulton counties—currently coordinates its advanced math program with local colleges. Why not expand the concept to all high schools, instead of eliminating it, as Kathy Cox has proposed?

    How to Expand

    Beginning in the 11th grade, public high schools could coordinate curriculums with local universities, junior colleges, certificate programs, and technical colleges to give kids a chance to pursue job training or advanced academics. This would not only save tax-payer money, it would match students with their best opportunities to become productive tax payers after high school. Also, graduates that earn vocational certificates could still expand their education down the road. For example, a nurse’s aide could train to become a nurse.
    University-track students would be eligible to have their junior and senior year course work coordinated with a university system, either on campus or via the internet. This would both challenge Georgia students and give them a leg-up when competing with students from other states. This idea has already been proven effective in Cherokee county’s advanced math program—which is nationally ranked.

    Sonny and Casey

    Please take the lead by giving Georgia counties the option to transform their public school districts into charter school districts and by helping facilitate the flow of funds between high schools and the higher education systems so we can implement this solution. We need you to take a leadership role in reforming our education system so it better invests in our children’s future while saving tax-payer’s money.

    Please contact Sonny, Casey, your local principal, and local school board to demand that they give your children the academic and vocational choices they deserve.

  2. juliobarrios says:

    This is the first time in a decade this regional agency has stripped a system of its accreditation — and the first time in Georgia history.

    To blame George Bush, or anyone in the Federal government, for this mess is completely preposterous. When you think of some of the pathetic school districts, and their abysmal graduation rates, that have had no problem maintaining accreditation; you realize the pathetically low standards that need to be met.

    I’m a believer in charter schools, but this problem is far beyond charter versus traditional public schools.

    The only blame for this travesty needs to be laid squarely at the feet of the school board and the citizens who thoughtlessly voted for them.

  3. John Konop says:

    Juliobarrios

    Do you understand that No Child Left Behind stripes the local community of control over the school. Did you know it pushes the cost of education up be a third per pupil with no results? Do you know KATHY COX has taken to a new level with pushing State mandated failed programs from other states like Math 123?

    I have no idea about the quality of the school district but the unfunded heavy handed mandates from NCLB have hurt the lower income level school districts the most.

    READ THE LINKS AND LEARN ABOUT THE ISSUE!

    http://controlcongress.com/uncategorized/sonny-perdue-must-stop-kathy-cox

    http://controlcongress.com/uncategorized/no-child-target-is-called-out-of-reach

  4. joe says:

    What is it about NCLB that causes a BOE member to live outside of the county? What is it about NCLB that causes such infighting between BOE members that SACS describes it as “dysfunctional”?

    Learn some facts before you go off on your diatribe. Have you always been such a hack?

  5. John Konop says:

    Joe

    WP-No Child Left Behind, the landmark federal education law, sets a lofty standard: that all students tested in reading and math will reach grade level by 2014. Even when the law was enacted five years ago, almost no one believed that standard was realistic.

    But now, as Congress begins to debate renewing the law, lawmakers and education officials are confronting the reality of the approaching deadline and the difficult political choice between sticking with the vision of universal proficiency or backing away from it.

    “There is a zero percent chance that we will ever reach a 100 percent target,” said Robert L. Linn, co-director of the National Center for Research on Evaluation, Standards and Student Testing at UCLA. “But because the title of the law is so rhetorically brilliant, politicians are afraid to change this completely unrealistic standard. They don’t want to be accused of leaving some children behind.”

    But testing experts say there are vast academic differences among children of the same racial or socioeconomic background. Countries with far less racial diversity than the United States still find wide variations in student performance. Even in relatively homogenous Singapore, for example, a world leader in science and math tests, a quarter of the students tested are not proficient in math, and 49 percent fall short in science.

    “Most people are afraid that once you acknowledge this variation, then you have to tolerate major inequities between black and white students,” said Daniel Koretz, a Harvard University education professor. “That’s not necessarily true, but that’s why the political world does not really address the issue.”

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/03/13/AR2007031301781.html

  6. John Konop says:

    FYI

    ….As of the census² of 2000, there were 236,517 people, 82,243 households, and 59,214 families residing in the county. The population density was 1,658 people per square mile (640/km²). There were 86,461 housing units at an average density of 606 per square mile (234/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 37.9% White, 51.6% Black or African American, 0.32% Native American, 4.49% Asian, 0.07% Pacific Islander, 3.55% from other races, and 2.08% from two or more races. 7.50% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race……..

  7. joe says:

    I do not like NCLB. It is not a federal issue. (See the 10th amendment to the US constitution) However, nothing you have said discusses the problems in Clayton. I don’t know if you are being silly or stupid, but Clayton problems are NOT related to NCLB.

  8. juliobarrios says:

    John-

    I could understand the temptation to point the finger at NCLB if school districts were losing accreditation across the state and the country — but that is not the case. It appears as if you are trying to use inductive reasoning when it comes to trying to prove a failure with NCLB.

  9. John Konop says:

    Joe

    The truth is districts that have demographics like Clayton are having problems with passing NCLB accreditation standards. If you talk to any honest educator they will tell you this heavy handed approach is leaving kids behind while publishing companies line their pockets with tax payer’s dollars.

    As I said Clayton County may have poor leadership but NCLB is a death sentence anyways.

    We need a complete new direction!

    I was at an event for my oldest son at his school and I was talking to his principal about the latest craziness FROM KATHY COX with math 123. She told me, everybody knows this will hurt gifted kids and drive the drop out rate up but my hands are tied. I have heard the same from my local school board.

    HOW DO I HOLD THEM ACCOUTABLE?

    Our constitution does not guarantee results. Yet it was designed to hold local office holders accountable. NCLB creates a finger pointing game while students get hurt and tax payers get soaked!

  10. MikeS says:

    The falling school in Clayton County and the petty and obvious corruption of the school board have more to do with the one-party rule in Clyaton than No Child Left behind. The Democrats messed up Grady, they messed up the Atlanta city government, and they messed up the Clayton County schools.

    In Comparison, the Dekalb has a small, but strong GOP. This has allowed the Voters in Dekalb a choose and unlike Clayton County, it has kept the Democrats more honest than they normally would be. I hope the Clayton GOP take this chance to fight for change.

  11. AubieTurtle says:

    2 + 3 + 4 = 9

    not 2, not 3, not 4 but 9.

    Why is that important? Because like most problems, the issue of Clayton schools has many causes. One can argue the NCLB is what pushed an already poor school system over the edge. The fact it was near the edge isn’t the fault of NCLB but it may indeed be the factor that pushed the school system beyond the minimum standards for SACS. We can debate if NCLB is the 2, 3, or 4 in this situation, but I don’t see how one care argue that it is a 9.

    As far as the school board member living outside the county goes, that’s clearly illegal but shouldn’t be pointed to as a cause but rather a symptom of an electorate that didn’t take their responsibility to elect a good school board seriously. I don’t know what was in the hearts and minds of the voters when they elected these people but obviously the backgrounds of the candidates weren’t checked very deeply. To be fair, this is likely the case in most jurisdictions. Also if it was a cause rather than a symptom, would that mean that the Clayton schools still would have failed if somehow the entire slate of members of the Cherokee County school board had been elected to the Clayton Board?

    It is unfortunate that the students of the Clayton school system are going to be so hurt by the loss of accreditation. It is even more unfortunate that they didn’t get a good education, which when it comes down to it, is why accreditation was lost. But hopefully this serves as a wake up call to the electorate, not just in Clayton but all over the metro and the state, that the school board is no place for those who see it as a step up the political ladder. Hopefully it also shocks parents into being more involved instead of thinking of education as something that is totally the responsibility of the government. Quite frankly, I believe parental involvement is the most important factor in the education process, though as illustrated above, far from the only factor.

  12. Holly says:

    Hopefully it also shocks parents into being more involved instead of thinking of education as something that is totally the responsibility of the government. Quite frankly, I believe parental involvement is the most important factor in the education process, though as illustrated above, far from the only factor.

    Indeed, AubieTurtle. For anyone who’s paid attention to education in Georgia, you know that SACS has been around long before NCLB. They’ve been accrediting schools since I can remember. They definitely don’t use NCLB as their sole source (if any source) for allowing schools to keep their accreditations. They can’t; SACS far predated that law.

    I’m not going to argue that NCLB is a good law. I do, however, think it had good intentions and went about pursuing them in the wrong way. But even failing schools by NCLB standards manage to keep their accreditation through SACS, though Clayton County did not.

    That means that there’s more to the problem than poor performance on test scores. In order for the problems to be fixed, those whose children attend Clayton County Schools are going to have to get involved and demand changes from top to bottom in the system.

  13. John Konop says:

    The truth is schools with the same demographics in all counties are having similar problems that Clayton County is having with accreditation standards with No Child Left Behind. SACS and local school districts have no choice but to follow NCLB standards.

    NCLB also hurts accelerated children because the goal is to equalize them not help guide the children toward a realistic bath in life. Also the system punishes children and parents who are the key part of a successful education. Why should individual children who are doing fine be punished for children and parents that fall short in their school or district?

    Many of you are quick to bounce on the failures for political reasons of the Clayton County school district, yet protect the lawmakers from your party who have very dirty hands in this situation.

    Why not complain about Kathy Cox, President Bush, Ted Kennedy and the rest of the lawmakers, who have been enablers of this failed system (NCLB) yet keep promoting it for political reason while selling out our children future?

  14. juliobarrios says:

    “Many of you are quick to bounce on the failures for political reasons of the Clayton County school district, yet protect the lawmakers from your party who have very dirty hands in this situation.”

    Because it’s not a “situation”. You’ve thrown out some unsubstantiated claims that other school districts are having trouble with accreditation, but the fact is losing accreditation is an extremely rare occurrence reserved only for the most pathetically run school boards in the history of American education. Keep in mind this is the first time a school system has lost accreditation in Georgia history, and we’ve got some pretty rough school systems.

    You keep trying to make a correlation between NCLB and the failure of Clayton County, but until you back it up with some factual examples of other school systems who have lost accreditation due to NCLB, your simply trying to apply inductive logic to this scenario.

    With your logic you might as well check and see what brand of tater-tot they serve in their cafeterias and try to blame their loss of accreditation on Ore-Ida.

  15. John Konop says:

    Juliobarrios

    If you compare the schools in Cobb, Gwinnett……..that are having accreditation problems they are similar to the demographics of Clayton County schools.

    I am not defending Clayton County schools but it is irrational not to look at the root of the problem and only throw stones at Clayton County.

    I challenge you to talk to the Superintendent of your school district and ask them how well they are doing with similar type schools like in Clayton County. This is a problem across the country post NCLB. I challenge you to ask them about NCLB and math 123 Kathy Cox’s latest giveaway to lobbyist leaving children behind and tax payers with the bill.

    It looks like, for political reason you give Kathy Cox, President Bush…..a pass and yet are quick to go after Clayton County board.

    You cannot solve the problem without understanding all the issues. I am not giving the Clayton County board a pass, yet to not see all the other hands in this problem is putting your head in the sand

  16. Bill Simon says:

    Oh, c’mon you guys! Senator Joe Carter (R-Nanny State Idiot) knows the real reason why Clayton County lost its accreditation: It was obviously because they have too high of a BMI value in the aggregate of their students who attend!

    Don’t worry, though, HIS bill will save the day on all of our education woes. Granted…it may cause a 5000% increase in the number of kids who get hooked on meth, but that’s a small price to pay for having a school designated as being a “Healthy School Zone.”

  17. Tom Smith says:

    We have petitioned for Marietta City Schools to go to a system charter and we have open choice if you live in the city.

    I was elected to the BOE because my then member lived outside the district. Another left the board when he was discovered to live out of district.

    I expect the state to pass laws that allow Clayton grads to get the HOPE scholarship. It has a lot of opportunity for someone to be a political hero.

  18. Tom Smith says:

    I generally do not like any mandates from Federal or State governments. Let the locals decide their curriculum and compete against other systems. Under NCLB all schools will eventually not meet AYP. Getting on that “needs improvement” list will be like getting a speeding ticket. Only hope is that as elections take place the new guy changes the rules again and it starts over.

    Hard to make real progress. That is why going to a system charter will be helpful from a state mandate perspective.

  19. John Konop says:

    Tom Smith

    If I lived in Marietta you would get my vote! Contact me when you run again and I will donate to your campaign.

    Keep up the fight!

    Please read this about Math 123 if you do not know about the issue.

    Sonny Perdue Must Stop Kathy Cox

    Georgia’s State Superintendent of Schools, Kathy Cox, has imposed a dramatically different high school math curriculum without properly reviewing it with teachers and parents. She is replacing the traditional structure (Algebra I & II, Geometry, Trigonometry, and Calculus) with vaguely-titled Math 1, Math 2, and Math 3.
    There are currently four math tracks available to high school students. They vary in difficulty to accommodate a broad range of math abilities. Under Cox’s proposed change, freshmen, sophomores, and juniors will now only have two tracks (Math 1 and Advanced Math 1, Math 2 and Advanced Math 2…). Cox’s new mandate may be well intended-but the devil’s in the details.

    Lobbyist-Driven Education Policies

    Politicians like Kathy Cox have been promoting programs like this to help fund their political campaigns instead of being straight with parents. David Chastain, Director of Georgia Libertarian Party, claims Kathy is bought and sold by the educational lobbyists who represent the companies that provide the consulting, textbooks, and testing materials needed to implement the new program.
    Kids would be better served if we had far fewer heavy-handed state and federal mandates (which they aren’t responsible for implementing or funding), and instead gave more money directly to the local school district and let local voters hold them accountable. In fact, if we eliminated these kinds of pork-filled bureaucratic misadventures we could raise the proportion of education funding that goes to classrooms (versus administration) to 65%. Please click here for more information.

    Problem #1: Cox punishes gifted and advanced kids

    As part of her new math program, Cox wants to stop giving gifted and advanced middle school math students the chance to earn high school credit in math (algebra). Currently, these advanced junior high courses (that Cox wants to eliminate) make Georgia students eligible for college math courses in their junior year, which helps them get placed in the top colleges.
    The Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that Cherokee County School Superintendent, Dr. Petruzielo, said this aspect of Cox’s new math program doesn’t make sense. “One of the things Cherokee County is proud of is the number of kids in middle school who take algebra. Next fall we will have ninth-graders in high school taking algebra for credit. Why not have seventh- and eighth-graders take algebra? And if they can pass the end of course test, why in the world would they not get credit?” In fact, 95% of Cherokee County’s junior high Algebra 1 students pass the Cox’s own, state-required, EOCT test.

    Problem #2: Students will suffer under unrealistic goals

    Cox spokesperson and Georgia’s math program manager Claire Pierce told me that a goal of the new math program is to have 85% of Georgia’s students graduate having completed the equivalent of Algebra II. I believe this goal makes the same mistake as President Bush’s unpopular No Child Left Behind (NCLB) program: not all high school students should prepare for college. As reported by the AJC, it is wildly unrealistic to expect that they should, and it damages the self-esteem of kids that would be better served by a vocational program.
    It’s more likely that 85% is the proportion of students she wants to buy new textbooks for, as a favor to her education-industry campaign donors.

    Problem #3: Unrealistic goals for the teachers

    I support high (yet realistic) expectations. But Kathy Cox’s unrealistic plan to graduate 85% of our high school students with the equivalent of Algebra II will destroy the morale of math teachers. Georgia’s high school classrooms face an explosion of immigrants with very poor English skills, pregnant teens, drug users, and kids with parents who don’t support academics.
    Finally, Cox needs to double check her math-if currently 44% of Georgia’s high school students drop out and only 29% (nationally) graduate with math proficiency (which doesn’t include Algebra II), how can she possibly meet her 85% goal? The only way is to hide watered-down standards behind the vaguely titled Math 1, 2, and 3.

    Problem #4: A rushed and careless policy

    Cherokee County’s Mark Smith says Cox’s new math program hasn’t been reviewed with any colleges except those within Georgia’s state system. Meaning no one knows if or how colleges from other states will accept it. “This is a sea change in the way registrars look at stuff,” Petruzielo said. “I’m not comfortable [with the new courses]. We wouldn’t want our kids to be at a disadvantage.”

    The state has also failed address how to handle students transferring into Georgia public high schools. Since the new curriculum is mandatory, advanced students transferring into our systems could be forced to sit through math classes they have already mastered. The same holds true for middle school students who have taken advanced math courses.

  20. Tom Smith says:

    Yeah the 123 is a bit scripted for me. They have also added an additional high level math requirement and are trying to dismantle the tech diploma forcing kids to take the same path. They do this under the guise of “rigor” and “higher achievement” but really are not goal oriented but rather process driven in a PR battle for votes. “I support education therefore…….”.

    Kathy Cox started off fine. A school teacher that got elected because people got her mixed up with the “other” Kathy Cox (Sec of State). But the academia wonks got a hold of her. I heard her speak at a conference a few months back and it sounded like a stump speech.

    One of the reasons I would like to go to a system charter is to allow us to put gifted math students in a classroom at a higher number and focus some lower ratio’s on those that are not math oriented. Some of this nonsense we are just not going to do.

    Most of our BOE members are pretty Conservative. It will be interesting after a few years as a charter system if we can make some progress.

  21. John Konop says:

    Tom

    What do you think of this idea?

    Beginning in the 11th grade, public high schools could coordinate curriculums with local universities, junior colleges, certificate programs, and technical colleges to give kids a chance to pursue job training or advanced academics.

  22. Tom Smith says:

    It works. We had a real winner of a program with Chattahoochee Tech where 11-12 grade would join enroll and end up being certified in a technical area and able to have a career shortly after HS. I actually like joint enrollment over some of the AP type courses in that you gain college credit while in HS. Our Math, Science, and Technology Magnet school works with Southern Poly so that they are on track for engineering school by the time they get to the 11th grade.

    So much local systems can and will do if the State would bugger off and let people like you and your neighbors determine what fits YOUR community.

  23. juliobarrios says:

    “Politicians like Kathy Cox have been promoting programs like this to help fund their political campaigns instead of being straight with parents. David Chastain, Director of Georgia Libertarian Party, claims Kathy is bought and sold by the educational lobbyists who represent the companies that provide the consulting, textbooks, and testing materials needed to implement the new program.”

    You make an outrageous statement and the evidence you give to back it up is an unsupported quote from the Chairman of an opposing political party.

    Give me a break – it’s getting really thick in here. Did you even bother reviewing her disclosures before making such a defamatory statement. If there are contributions from textbook lobbyists they would be in the insignificant minority. The overwhelming majority of contributors are other elected officials, school board members, teachers, and the usual GOP suspects.

    The great irony is that Kathy was criticized during her entire campaign for raising so little money. People thought it was extremely low for an incumbent statewide official.

  24. Joshua Patterson says:

    John,
    Kids can already go to college or tech their 11th or 12th grade years and the state pays for it with HOPE. (Google the Georgia Accel Grant)

    I only spent half a day at my high school my senior year and the other half at Clayton State.

    All it takes is a student who has the desire to find out about the program and apply.

    The public schools don’t promote this because it takes the most promising students out of classes at the high school and lowers test scores, gpas, etc.

  25. John Konop says:

    juliobarrios

    It is common knowledge that politicians like Kath Cox pimp NCLB! The problem reaches across both parties.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/03/13/AR2007031301781.html

    But guess who loves NCLB—the educational-test publishing industry, which is dominated by four companies: Harcourt Educational Measurement, CTB McGraw-Hill, Riverside Publishing, and Pearson Educational Measurement. Three of these are divisions of much larger, multinational corporations.

    These companies exist to make profits, not to improve education. They know how to rake in these profitable testing contracts: lobby, lobby, lobby. Bruce Hunter of the American Association of School Administrators said, “I’ve been lobbying on education issues since 1982, but the test publishers have been active at a level I’ve never seen before. At every hearing, every discussion, the big test publishers are always present with at least one lobbyist, sometimes more.”

    http://controlcongress.com/uncategorized/are-you-a-no-child-left-behind-loser

    …“There is a zero percent chance that we will ever reach a 100 percent target,” said Robert L. Linn, co-director of the National Center for Research on Evaluation, Standards and Student Testing at UCLA. “But because the title of the law is so rhetorically brilliant, politicians are afraid to change this completely unrealistic standard. They don’t want to be accused of leaving some children behind.”….

  26. John Konop says:

    Juliobarrios

    What is outrageous is party hacks like you cover for Kathy Cox on promoting math 123! Why do you support this NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND approach of education that has a goal of equalizing scores among students? I am for equal opportunity not equalizing results!

    …..NCLB has failed. It has failed our schools, it has failed our teachers and it has failed our children.

    The Bush administration claims victories, but upon closer scrutiny it becomes clear that the White House is simply dressing up ugly data with fancy political spin. Far from leaving no child behind, President Bush seems to have left reality behind.

    Just look at the facts. The National Assessment of Educational Progress shows a slight narrowing of the racial achievement gap over the past three years. This narrowing, however, is due to a decline in overall reading scores, not to improvements in minority student performance…….

    http://controlcongress.com/uncategorized/nclb-fails-our-schools

  27. John Konop says:

    Joshua Patterson

    The new math 123 eliminates that track for college bound kids because it does track the way the University teaches math. My son is the last class allowed to take algebra 1 in the 7th grade and take college math and science at KSU his joiner and senior year.

    This program in Cherokee was ranked nationally and is being replaced by math 123.

    Also it will hurt vocational or tech bound kids because they cannot start their program until completing math 123 which has nothing to do with the track they need for a degree.

    This is why every principal, math teacher, board member I have talk with about math 123….think this will drive the drop out rate up and hurt gifted and advance students.

    Also, Cox spokesperson and Georgia’s math program manager Claire Pierce has offered her resignation many times from what I heard because she knows this is a mistake waiting to happen.

  28. Bill Simon says:

    Perhaps this is the first time a school board has been run completely by liberal Democrats for so long is the reason why Clayton County lost its accreditation.

    Corrupt, liberal Democrats, that is.

  29. Romegaguy says:

    So students will not be able to get in to colleges if the school system they graduate from loses its accreditation so ATHLETES will be allowed to transfer to other school systems. What about the non-athlete students?

  30. AubieTurtle says:

    I’d be careful with that line of thinking Bill. Republican dominated states don’t stack up that well in the education department against the bed wetting liberal states, especially those in the northeast.

    While it certainly doesn’t mean that each and every school in the higher ranked 48 states are better, having even the best school system in the 49th best state isn’t something anyone should brag about. I always got a good laugh out of seeing the test scores for the “magnet schools” in Montgomery. They were almost always right at or a bit below the national average.

    I do find it interesting that this thread was basically hijacked and turned into a NCLB thread instead of a discussion of the Clayton County school system. It’s not as if every other school system in the state is unaffected by NCLB. Clayton’s problems are bigger than NCLB.

  31. John Konop says:

    AubieTurtle

    How can one intelligently discus accreditation without talking about NCLB? I do think some people on this thread think NCLB is some how separate from our accreditation system.

    And if all schools across the country with same demographics as Clayton schools are having the same problem with NCLB accreditation is that not an issue?

    You are right that many of the problems were here before NCLB but this system now punishes children in substandard schools and top tier schools.

    How can you not expect the above school problem to get worse when they underlying goal of NCLB is equalizing student achievement not equalizing opportunity?

    Why do you defend Kathy Cox, George Bush, Ted Kennedy and the rest of the politicians that sold us out and yet go after the board at Clayton County school district?

    Republicans tell us this failed system is working and Democrats tell us throw more money at the failed system.

    Why not fix the root of the problem instead of using the issue as a political football

  32. Icarus says:

    “How can one intelligently discus accreditation without talking about NCLB?”

    Because the Clayton school system is losing its accreditation over a meddling kabal of school board members, not for failing to make AYP according to NCLB.

    “And if all schools across the country with same demographics as Clayton schools are having the same problem with NCLB accreditation is that not an issue? ”

    No, it’s not, because they are two separate issues. Please name me one school system of any demographic that has lost its accreditation over NCLB. You can’t, because there are not any, including Clayton.

  33. John Konop says:

    Icarus

    I read 74% of the students in Clayton school system live below the poverty line. If you look at similar schools within Cobb, Fulton, Gwinnet…they are all facing the same problem with accreditation. Clayton has a larger concentration of poverty than the other counties.

    I am not defending the Clayton county board. But you are naive to think that the NCLB accreditation issue is not a major issue in poor school districts. Also any rational person looking at the NCLB system can see it has made the problem worse and hurt our better schools.

    How can you not expect the above school problem to get worse when they underlying goal of NCLB is equalizing student achievement not equalizing opportunity?

  34. Icarus says:

    “the NCLB accreditation issue”

    There is no such thing as “THE” NCLB accreditation issue. They are two separate issues.

    Do systems with more students from homes below the poverty level have more difficulty meeting NCLB expectations? Sure.

    Do these systems have more difficulty meeting accreditation standards? No way.

    NCLB is not accreditation. Accreditation standards were in place long before NCLB, and have a lot more to do with inputs, funding, curriculum, and bureaucratic control. NCLB is much more focused on output from the system, and has nothing to do with accreditation.

  35. John Konop says:

    The game is simple if Georgia does not follow NCLB we do not get our tax dollars back. One could argue that the federal government spent our tax dollars already and this is being financed by China but that is a different topic.

    What is included in the “Accountability” section?

    This section contains the Accountability Profile for either a school or a system that has been established by Georgia’s Single Statewide Accountability System (SSAS) in compliance with Georgia law and the federal No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). Georgia’s SSAS is comprised of three components: Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP), a Progress Index, and Other Valuable Indicators. For more information about the SSAS, check out the State Board of Education’s rules 160-7-1-.01, 160-7-1-.02, 160-7-1-.03, and 160-7-1-.04 at http://www.doe.k12.ga.us. In addition, this section includes information about Highly Qualified Teachers as defined by NCLB and the Georgia Professional Standards Commission. Accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) and by the Georgia Accrediting Commission (GAC) is presented for each school and summarized by system and state.

    http://reportcard2005.gaosa.org/k12/About.asp

  36. dragonfire says:

    John,

    Icarus is right. NCLB is not accreditation. In the state of Georgia, accreditation is governed by SACS. When the process is done well, districts “should” be in a better position to meet NCLB. Of course, this does not mean that they are.

    For a better sense of what occurs for district accreditation, see:

    http://www.advanc-ed.org/accreditation/district_accreditation/?

    You’ve done a fine job with your research for NCLB in the state of Georgia, btw. Still, NCLB and Accreditation are two different issues.

  37. Bill Simon says:

    Aubie,

    Fair point…but, in Georgia, the libbie-Dems are notorious for being born corrupt, raised corrupt, and live a life of corrupt-thinking.

    “Corrupt-thinking” being “How can I make this process work to my benefit without doing too much work?”

  38. Harry says:

    John,

    So with Math123, can I leave my kids in the Gwinnett public schools? Or does it represent a dumbing-down of the overall system?

  39. John Konop says:

    Harry,

    It is a “dumbing-down” of the system for gifted and advance kids. And it makes the system to hard for vocational bound students.

    I am not sure how Gwinnett is rolling out this re-cycled failed math program. You should to talk to a math teachers at your son and or daughter’s school and ask them about math 123. I have left my youngest daughter in private school because in Cherokee I was told by numerous people in charge “my hands are tied and we think it will not take long before it fails here like everywhere else.”

    The goal of NCLB is to equalize test scores of students instead of promoting choices and opportunities for students that best fits their educational needs.

    I had heard from a friend on the Cobb BOE board that the whole district is considering what Marietta is doing and declaring the distinct Charter to get out of math 123 because of all the issues. We need more board members with integrity like Tom Smith and my friend and that is why I am promoting the idea.

    I lead a protest last year when Kath Cox spoke in Cherokee and my oldest son class was grandfathered into the old system and he is in 8th grade. The sad part is I have talk to numerous board members, principals, math teachers, academic leaders for Technical colleges and Universities all tell me math 123 is a failure waiting to happen and that is why Georgia’s math program manager Claire Pierce has offered her resignation many times!

    It is frustrating as a parent that everybody knows the NCLB is a failure destroying our schools yet few will stand up and say enough is enough. The politicians are politically scared to tell parents that every child was not meant to go to college. Yet we do need mechanics, policemen, beauticians…..Also that a school can only provide opportunity. The school cannot be a replacement for a dysfunctional home.

    Parents must foster the attitude in their children that going to school is a privilege not a right!

  40. John Konop says:

    Dragonfire,

    Thank you for the information.

    The reason I did the research is I took my oldest son out of private school because I found out about the nationally rank program in Cherokee that allowed my son to take algebra 1 in 7th grade. My friend’s daughter was accepted at MIT with recommendation from professors at KSU because as a junior in high school she was taking classes at the University.

    I was outraged when not only did Kathy Cox eliminate this program she wanted not to honor the high school credits he had earned. If that was not enough she lied to the parents in Cherokee county telling us our children in the gifted program were behind national averages.

    I knew this was illogical because my son took the SAT in 7th grade and his score was in the top 25% of gifted children across the country and his score was not the best in his class.

    I than found out from the board and our superintendent that Kathy Cox was using State wide numbers with numerous different gifted programs while knowing the real results in Cherokee.

    The truth was Cherokee math program for gifted students was ranked 12th in the nation. And I heard Cobb and North Fulton was using a similar program with excellent results as well.

    I than ask Kathy why not expand the concept of using higher education to supplement children in the 11th and 12th grade for all subjects college bound or vocational since it is the only concept that is working?

    She gave me a guilt driven politically correct answer that I was boxing students’ future and every child needs all the skills to go to college. She than gave me the equalization of student NCLB propaganda speech.

    This is what motivated me to research the topic. I just hope and pray people but aside their political differences and help solve this problem.

    Please let your voice be heard and tell Sonny, Casey, Cox, local reps, school board and federal lawmakers put the politics aside and fix the problem. AND STOP MATH 123 and NCLB before it does even more damage!

  41. Harry says:

    Here’s the Georgia Dept of Ed comments

    Here’s a comment I made to their public intake e-mail:

    You must be aware that the public perception of your new curriculum (popularly referred to as Math123) is very poor. Kathy Cox has done a terrible job of convincing parents that this is in fact not a dumbing down of public school math. It doesn’t do any good for members of the state board of education to state that every child can learn equally well. It’s imply not true, and trying to mix the different levels of ability will serve only to dumb down the entire group. We cannot afford to not compete on the world economy.

    We really wonder if any of you are even listening to our concerns.

  42. Demonbeck says:

    I normally don’t read anything but the headline. Why did Clayton lose his front page posting privileges?

  43. bluemcduff says:

    I live in Clayton County and have to deal with this–the brazen arrogance of all nine of these members in the way they have conducted themselves throughout this process is so predictable and expected.

    I have to had put up with the caterwauling and race-baiting of Norreese Haynes and thrilled he’s gone–but I promise you that his clone is waiting in the wings ready to be voted in by the people who put people like him in to begin with.

  44. jsm says:

    If I were a junior in a Clayton Co. school, I’d be asking my governor how my school taxes could get me enrolled in an accredited school so that I graduate with an accredited diploma.

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