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Saturday, December 22, 2012

The state of Florida says we should close Stanton and Paxon

I took a little liberty but please follow.

Ribault and the aforementioned academic magnet schools all earned an A grade from the state of Florida. That makes them the best of the best. So it stands to reason that if students can get a best of the best education at a neighborhood school then we no longer need academic magnet schools. The academic magnet school is an idea that has come and gone. That is if you believe the states grading scale. Sadly you probably shouldn’t.

The recipe for school improvement includes, one part get rid of your lowest performing students, two parts have everyone takes an AP class (you don't have to pass the test, you just have to take the course) and the ACT or SAT and a dash of have the state change the grading system so failure is nearly impossible. Presto Jackson goes from the lowest performing school in the state to a B and Ribault gets its A grade.

I know there are hard working teachers and students at Ribault but I also know there were hard working teachers and students at Ribault when they earned all the F and D grades too. I also believe it is likely their miraculous turn around is at least partly the result of a numbers game that the state of Florida and the district are all to willing to play.

We should celebrate our successes but we should be cautious about this news unless you think an A at Ribault and an A at Stanton mean the same thing.

Chris Guerrieri
School Teacher

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