Still Going to School
A cost-benefit analysis of sorts has led me to give up on the Tiverton town council. I simply can’t afford to devote that much time to such an unprofitable activity (especially if my taxes are going to continue to climb).
Still, the school committee remains sufficiently interesting and important that I’ll continue to make the time for it. That despite the likelihood that my children won’t long be in the public system. (Another matter that will require me to maximize the profitability of my hours.)
It’ll wear you down, this local government participation. The latest cuts that Superintendent Bill Rearick has proposed include a hundred dollars for repair here and there, $2,500 each from a couple of testing accounts. And yet the teachers are working to rule.
Now Rearick is talking about the NECAP results and pointing out that Tiverton High School was #11 in the state overall. But 72% of the kids aren’t proficient in math. “It’s certainly not a cure-all, but money would help us — push our kids and get our teachers additional training.” Now a teacher is explaining that the kids have no incentive to apply themselves to the test.
Rearick: “It’s a new test that assumes that students have basic skills and tests them on higher level thinking.”
A principal: “Not sure whether this is a valid test.” Apparently, low-scoring kids said they had plenty of time for the test (because they hadn’t been prepared for a signficant number of the questions anyway), while higher-scoring students felt that they didn’t have enough time.
Stunningly, nobody in the auditorium seems to feel any sense of urgency to improve these math scores. Not a single specific request or declaration concerning steps to improve them was voiced. Some stuff is up to the state. Some stuff has to do with the test. Some stuff involves the alignment of the stars.
The superintendent and some committee members congratulated the staff and teachers for doing so comparatively well. What? Either the test is invalid or our children are being abysmally cheated when it comes to math.
Can I possibly be the only person in some way connected to the Tiverton school district who thinks this matter shouldn’t be brushed off the table with just a few minutes of mitigation?