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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The inexplicable logic of newspaper editors

Sometimes I feel like the Time Union editors are messing with me. You know like how a friend does when they bring up a touchy subject to get a rise out of you. The difference though is friends will stop before it gets too far, where the Times Union editors keep on going well that and how their unwavering support of the superintendent and their willful ignorance about what is happening in our schools has led to people’s lives being ruined and kids not getting the education they deserve. They continued to go too far today in a piece about the superintendent.

For the last two years the Times Union has steadfastly said we have the right superintendent for the job, now that he has been fired the headline reads, Time is right for new leadership.

They wrote, Wise’s commitment to Advanced Placement exams looked good on national metrics but included students in college level courses who couldn’t even read at grade level. Um nothing has changed, we still put low level kids in Advanced Placement classes that they have no business being in. Why was it bad for Wise to do so but okay that Pratt-Dannals continues to do so?

You know what other metrics look good on paper but fall apart with any critical thought? Our graduation rates and our school grades but the editors can dismiss that and choose not to delve any deeper because that doesn’t fit the narrative they have decided for Pratt-Dannals.

Let me give you an example, later in the same piece they wrote: Similarly, Duval is a state leader in the number of high school graduates who are ready for college, a key quality indicator. Well Florida State College has said, 70% of our grads have to take remedial classes once they arrive, I wonder what kind of indicator that is? To me it is another indicator the Times Union doesn’t know what it is talking about.

Their article is full of double speak, poorly used numbers and high praise for a man many teachers, those most in the know, feel has run our district into the ground.

But hey it’s just an editorial on their part, not fact and we shouldn’t let facts get in the way of their opinions.


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