The House Education Committee passed House Bill 225 that prohibits 16- and 17-year-old students from dropping out of school.
That’s okay, but here’s the rest of the story:
– No homework was done to estimate the bill’s cost.
– No homework was done to estimate the bill’s savings.
– No solid numbers were provided on how many 16- and 17-year-olds drop out each year.
There were great emotional arguments and pleas for innovation to address this problem through more new technical and alternative programs.
Education Commissioner Terry Holliday said he can’t get a good count on dropouts until 2013! That must be spin for “we neither have a key performance indicator on dropouts nor do we want to know.”
I’ll bet any entrepreneur in the commonwealth could provide the leadership to get the numbers… now. Here’s how it would happen:
– Provide clear instructions.
– Direct each school district to use pencils, paper and the telephone to provide a number each week to the commissioner.
– Create a spreadsheet that will document weekly and cumulative statistics for each school, district and the state system.
– Act on the information.
High-performance organizations do such things when they want to win performance excellence awards.
It’s ironic that the leaders in the education committee meeting talked about raising expectations to keep 16- and 17-year-olds in school when their own personal expectations on understanding the cost, benefit and impact are so low. But words are easy…actions always speak louder.
They demonstrated great examples of “groupthink” and “it’s not my job” to get facts or measurements and offered a real negative lesson in leadership for all of our kids. They also set a new low for leading by example that said you don’t need facts to justify anything in Kentucky education- just emotions and empty words.
What a sorry example of leadership and not taking ownership.
Truly embarrassing! Our children deserve better.