KET’s Monday night show on charter schools provided plenty of examples of how opponents of charters will grasp at almost any straw to fight introducing these highly successful public schools in Kentucky.
One of the more outrageous of those examples occurred about 48 minutes into the program (which is on line here) when Brent McKim, president of the Jefferson County Teachers Association, tried to make a case that competition from charter schools would induce public schools to waste money on public relations instead of helping students.
Well, even without charter schools, our regular public school system has been working overtime to inundate the public with all sorts of public relations “stuff” about how wonderfully the system is progressing.
One of the worst examples comes from McKim’s very own school district. The Bluegrass Institute has written plenty about it.
This PR nonsense involves grossly inflated claims about reading improvement in Jefferson County under the Every1Reads program.
If McKim is really serious about public schools wasting money on PR stunts, he can start saving some money right now by getting his very own home town school district to stop misleading the public with the nonsense that any kid who scores above “Novice” on the Kentucky Core Content Tests is somehow “performing at grade level” and is doing just fine.
The facts are that while the Every1Reads program claims Jefferson County readers are over 90 percent up to speed, the recent National Assessment of Educational Progress Trial Urban District Assessment showed only 30 percent of the fourth graders in town read proficiently and just 26 percent of the eighth grade students did.