Driving Out the Desirables

Add this to the list of lists that place Rhode Island on the wrong side:

As of the most recent state report card issued by the National Association for Gifted Children, Rhode Island ranks at the bottom in nearly all categories, earning the state the dubious label of “most in need” with regard to critical indicators of quality gifted-education.

Failing to accommodate those with a higher capacity to learn is yet another way in which the socialist underpinnings of the state create the conditions for rot, with the expectation that talented, productive people will merely stay put while walls are built around them and their quality of life is threatened. Instead of egalitarianism, you get productive people fleeing the state and talented children departing the schools (which drags down scores and adversely affects the learning environment for all children).
Through personal channels, I recently heard the story of a Tiverton middle schooler who’s pestering her parents to send her to private school because she’s not being challenged. Children only have one opportunity to slide down the educational ramp that determines their momentum for much of their lives. After graduation, it’s a much harder slog. In this, as in so many ways, Rhode Island fails its citizens.

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chuckR
13 years ago

Rhode Island has a number of excellent private schools that are secular or only loosely affiliated with a particular religion. They do their best with scholarships, but almost certainly there are a number of poor smart kids who are missing out on the prerequisite to moving up the economic ladder. I think there is an inverse relationship between number of private schools and quality of public education.
My wife and I were fortunate in that we were able to send our kids to three private schools after middle school. Perhaps their teachers couldn’t expound on various theories of education content delivery, but they were absolute demons on content proper.
ps – at the same age, my daughter complained exactly like the Tiverton middle schooler you mentioned. The industrial classroom fails girls and boys for different reasons, but they are gender neutral in disappointing.

Greg
Greg
13 years ago

WOO! Yay us! We have the bestestist teachers evah!

WillP
WillP
13 years ago

Justin,
I absolutely mean no disrespect with the following question, but am curious if you care to answer.
From your posts you do seem to dislike both the State of RI and the town of Tiverton (admittedly just my take on the comments). But living here in the US with both mobility and opportunity for change so easy in comparison to other parts of the world, why do you chose to remain? I am not saying that anyone should just give up and not fight for change, etc., it just seems you are genuinely unhappy?

Justin Katz
13 years ago

Well, I’ve said before that there are family matters keeping me here. I’ve also suggested that part of the reason that Rhode Islanders may be tolerant of such political abuse is that there really is much to recommend the state (although fewer and fewer people can afford to avail themselves of it).
What I hate is the unnatural constriction of the state and the harm that self-interest and ideological blindness cause. Perhaps I’m just so constituted that, seeing iniquity, seeing advantages being taken and people suffering, my gut reaction is to grit my teeth and beat the bastards who lurk behind it all.

Mike
Mike
13 years ago

Another RI blog owner (who I won’t name) is boasting about his attendance at the posh Severn School-tuition $19,500.
Funny how all these Millionaire Marxists are “great supporters of the public schools’. for other’s kids that is.

Tom W
Tom W
13 years ago

To paraphrase Leona Helmsley: “Only the little people attend public schools.”

chuckR
13 years ago

“Another RI blog owner (who I won’t name) is boasting about his attendance at the posh Severn School-tuition $19,500.”
Well, at least he’s not blogging about his attendance at the posh Providence public schools – tuition $13000 +/-.
When you consider the cost of public schools, the private schools don’t seem so expensive for what they can deliver – if your kid is receptive to learning and you are receptive to working with them to get the most out of the experience.
Let me step away from the well-deserved bashing of the educational establishment to point out that part of the problem with public schools is that too many parents regard schools as day care and free day care at that. An education is often valued in proportion to the personal costs. Don’t have much invested? Then experience shows that you may not invest much of yourself. And even if you do, you’re outnumbered.

EMT
EMT
13 years ago

“Let me step away from the well-deserved bashing of the educational establishment to point out that part of the problem with public schools is that too many parents regard schools as day care and free day care at that.”
Congratulations! You just identified the sole reason Providence Schools were open yesterday.

chuckR
13 years ago

EMT
There are still plenty of parents who want better for their kids. 2500 applications for 500 slots in charter schools = 4000 disappointed parents. IIRC, by law the number of charter schools is capped at 20 and by another law only 4 are allowed in Providence. The majority of charter schools are non-union. At whose behest were those laws passed?
ps – “You must never forget that the number one job of public schools is daycare” – honest to God quote from my wife’s college friend at the end of her term on the Queens NY school board in the 1980’s. She didn’t try for the brass ring again.

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