Some people learn slower than others. That has certainly been the case where education in Kentucky is concerned.
From its inception in 2003, the Bluegrass Institute has been warning Kentuckians that the pace of progress in our public school system is just too slow.
We pointed out to the Kentucky Legislature years ago that far too many kids – many more than officials wanted to admit – weren’t even completing school, but were dropping out instead.
We published charts from the Council on Postsecondary education again and again that showed far too many Kentucky high school graduates were going on to college and promptly finding themselves in expensive remedial courses.
We’ve been pointing out for years that credible tests from the National Assessment of Educational Progress show that even today only around one in three fourth grade students tests proficient in math and reading, while in eighth grade the proportion is closer to only one in four. Meanwhile our state assessments turned in highly inflated reports of proficiency.
Now, finally, it looks like the KERA Amen Chorus is starting to sing a new tune.
This hand-wringing piece from the Daily Independent in Ashland cites recent analysis from the Prichard Committee and two other groups. That analysis also shows our schools are not on track to get kids to proficiency by 2014 and that something dramatic has to change.
Finally, the slow learners are catching up.
Of course, there is a price to pay for two decades of under-performing schools. And, you don’t have to look far to find some evidence. Note that the Independent’s title on their opinion piece has not one, but two obvious spelling errors. So much for all that KERA supported Whole Language Reading “stuff” that said we should allow kids to learn to spell “naturally!”