An Education Week article comparing the actions of Kentucky education officials to those of troubled mortgage borrowers somehow failed to gain the attention of Kentucky’s mainstream media this past week.
The article described how several states — Kentucky is highlighted, but not alone — have declined to get serious about improving education standards and now face having to take drastic measures to comply with federal requirements:
“While those may be legitimate reasons to postpone ambitious achievement goals, states may also have made their decisions based on political considerations, said Kevin Carey, the research and policy manager for Education Sector, based in Washington.”
“My guess is that those decisions were made with the reauthorization calendar firmly in mind,” said Mr. Carey, who compared the achievement timelines to adjustable-rate mortgages that offer homeowners low monthly payments in the short term. “They thought Congress would come along and refinance it for them.”
The Kentucky Department of Education, of course, is still in denial. KDE spinmeister Lisa Gross could muster a stiff upper lip, but little else:
“Kentucky educators know the state is expecting big increases starting in the current school year, Ms. Gross said, and are working to make their federal goals.
“Many schools are well aware of the rapidly approaching deadline for proficiency and are doing things to ensure that they are positioned to meet those goals,” said Ms. Gross. “Staff here is monitoring the progress closely, so that we can provide interventions and other services if needed.”
What this means, really, is that Kentucky’s illegitimate CATS testing program will be dumbed-down dramatically over the next six years to create the appearance of rapid educational improvement.
A legislative effort to replace the state’s woefully manipulated testing program failed earlier this year. Does anyone know how Gov. Steve Beshear’s “study” of CATS is going?