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Old 09-30-2009, 02:34 PM
 
Location: Rockville, MD
3,547 posts, read 7,876,111 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rlchurch View Post
There are some decent DC public schools. As the population continues the gentrify and the city takes schools seriously, the number of descent schools will increase and there will likely emerge very good/ excellent schools.
There are some decent elementary schools, but once you get past that level the quality drops precipitously. And the well-heeled are not typically putting their children through DC public schools, so I'm not sure I'm sold on your argument. DC may continue to attract the wealthy and monied, but that does not mean that those individuals are going to start placing their children into DC public schools at rates high enough to have an appreciable affect on the performance.
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Old 09-30-2009, 02:54 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 14thandYou View Post
There are some decent elementary schools, but once you get past that level the quality drops precipitously. And the well-heeled are not typically putting their children through DC public schools, so I'm not sure I'm sold on your argument. DC may continue to attract the wealthy and monied, but that does not mean that those individuals are going to start placing their children into DC public schools at rates high enough to have an appreciable affect on the performance.
No, what he is saying, if I may parse it, is that if gentrification enables DC to become a city that is majority middle class or above, then that will eventually be reflected in the school system.

Students from the middle classes or above tend to make good students. Good students tend to have involved parents. The combination results in good schools. Good school systems are made up of good schools.

Schools are a function of the communities they serve. If the DC school system one day serves a city that reflects his prediction, it will be a good system.
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Old 09-30-2009, 03:05 PM
 
Location: DC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moth View Post
Students from the middle classes or above tend to make good students. Good students tend to have involved parents. The combination results in good schools. Good school systems are made up of good schools.
That was sort of the argument I saw in the Rhee article. She wants to try and attract the "good" students (or those with more involved parents, etc.) in the hopes that it will start a trend on improving the schools. The problem is getting the first group to do it, since most involved parents wouldn't be too thrilled about their kids essentially being "guinea pigs".
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Old 09-30-2009, 03:18 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by juniperbleu View Post
That was sort of the argument I saw in the Rhee article. She wants to try and attract the "good" students (or those with more involved parents, etc.) in the hopes that it will start a trend on improving the schools. The problem is getting the first group to do it, since most involved parents wouldn't be too thrilled about their kids essentially being "guinea pigs".
Her success will be limited.

I attended Wilson HS. Since the late 60s, its borders have been expanded and it draws from a variety of areas in the city. It had plenty of good students but it also had its share of head cases. So you had to take the intensive and AP courses to get a good education. The end result was ok, but could be so much better.
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Old 09-30-2009, 03:39 PM
 
Location: Washington DC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moth View Post
No, what he is saying, if I may parse it, is that if gentrification enables DC to become a city that is majority middle class or above, then that will eventually be reflected in the school system.

Students from the middle classes or above tend to make good students. Good students tend to have involved parents. The combination results in good schools. Good school systems are made up of good schools.

Schools are a function of the communities they serve. If the DC school system one day serves a city that reflects his prediction, it will be a good system.
If you look, you'll see that transformation happening now. The political pressure to fix the school is what has driven the takeover by the mayor.
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Old 09-30-2009, 03:53 PM
 
Location: Rockville, MD
3,547 posts, read 7,876,111 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rlchurch View Post
If you look, you'll see that transformation happening now. The political pressure to fix the school is what has driven the takeover by the mayor.
I don't see that playing out in the District. I've seen some results which show some questionable improvement in certain test scores for certain schools--that's really about it. I'm also not seeing the DC public school system flooded with children from middle class and more well-to-do families.

Now, my caveat to this is that if the economy continues to suck wind, and private school tuition continues to increase, you may see more families turning to public schools out of necessity. That, IMO, is the only scenario with any likelihood of occuring that is going to significantly alter DC's public school system in the coming years. Expecting any sizeable group of parents to be the first to "test the waters" and send their kids en masse through DCPS is just not very likely, IMO.
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Old 09-30-2009, 04:03 PM
 
12,787 posts, read 18,571,053 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rlchurch View Post
If you look, you'll see that transformation happening now. The political pressure to fix the school is what has driven the takeover by the mayor.
Its not the schools. Its who is going to the schools.

When or if, as you described, gentrification changes the pool of students to one consisting of majority academically motivated kids, the school system will do fine without takeovers or any other phony hocus-pocus.

I was there. My high school was and is considered the crown jewel. And it had plenty of kids who just did not try. You can lead a horse to water...

All the money in the world is not going to teach a kid who does not wish it.
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Old 09-30-2009, 04:58 PM
 
Location: Washington DC
5,915 posts, read 7,501,134 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moth View Post
Its not the schools. Its who is going to the schools.

When or if, as you described, gentrification changes the pool of students to one consisting of majority academically motivated kids, the school system will do fine without takeovers or any other phony hocus-pocus.

I was there. My high school was and is considered the crown jewel. And it had plenty of kids who just did not try. You can lead a horse to water...

All the money in the world is not going to teach a kid who does not wish it.
Try getting a child into Lafayette Elementary School.

And guess what. I went to a very highly rated, at the time, high school in Texas and probably 1/2 the students were just sliding through. My son graduated from Quince Orchard, and there were plenty of kids just going through the motions.

It will take a few more years, but there are a lot of young families with kids moving into my neighborhood and there's increasing pressure for them to have a good public school options.
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Old 10-01-2009, 08:17 AM
 
12,787 posts, read 18,571,053 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rlchurch View Post
Try getting a child into Lafayette Elementary School.

And guess what. I went to a very highly rated, at the time, high school in Texas and probably 1/2 the students were just sliding through. My son graduated from Quince Orchard, and there were plenty of kids just going through the motions.

It will take a few more years, but there are a lot of young families with kids moving into my neighborhood and there's increasing pressure for them to have a good public school options.
Firstly, elementary schools in Upper NW are not the issue. Lafayette, Murch, and a couple of others are tough to get into out of boundary because the rest are pathetic.

Secondly, comparing your highly rated school in Texas or Quince Orchard to a DC public high school is inane and I think you know that. Still, nice for you to admit that you did not attend a DC Public school or send a kid to one. Rather easy to tout something you will never have to deal with.

"Just sliding through" or "Going through the motions" does not compare. My high school had a fair share of kids who could not read or did so on a second grade level. We had students threatening teachers. We had a shooting at a high school dance. We had 17 year olds struggling with long division. We had muggings in the bathroom. Yours truly had to carry a big blade when he was threatened by kids who had flunked and thus were older and bigger. Does any of that sound like what you or your son experienced? Thought not.

So please, do not insult my intelligence. You had it right the first time and now you are backtracking because I jokingly pointed out that you were espousing conservative thought.

One more time: Schools are a function of the communities they serve. If a school systems serves areas loaded with gang bangers, its going to reflect that. If it serves Beverly Hills, its going to reflect that. You said that in so many words. Now you need to accept it.
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Old 10-01-2009, 10:21 AM
 
Location: Washington DC
5,915 posts, read 7,501,134 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moth View Post
Firstly, elementary schools in Upper NW are not the issue. Lafayette, Murch, and a couple of others are tough to get into out of boundary because the rest are pathetic.

Secondly, comparing your highly rated school in Texas or Quince Orchard to a DC public high school is inane and I think you know that. Still, nice for you to admit that you did not attend a DC Public school or send a kid to one. Rather easy to tout something you will never have to deal with.
The important difference was the economic demographic of the student body. As that changes in the District so will the schools.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moth View Post
"Just sliding through" or "Going through the motions" does not compare. My high school had a fair share of kids who could not read or did so on a second grade level. We had students threatening teachers. We had a shooting at a high school dance. We had 17 year olds struggling with long division. We had muggings in the bathroom. Yours truly had to carry a big blade when he was threatened by kids who had flunked and thus were older and bigger. Does any of that sound like what you or your son experienced? Thought not.
You've described today and the past in DC schools. Not the future in 5-10 years.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moth View Post
So please, do not insult my intelligence. You had it right the first time and now you are backtracking because I jokingly pointed out that you were espousing conservative thought.
Don't set yourself up as a straight man. It does nothing to improve the conversation.

I'm not espousing conservative thought. Conservatives think you should let the poor rot. I just point out that a mixed economic community brought on by gentrification helps the schools.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moth View Post
One more time: Schools are a function of the communities they serve. If a school systems serves areas loaded with gang bangers, its going to reflect that. If it serves Beverly Hills, its going to reflect that. You said that in so many words. Now you need to accept it.
That's what I've said all along. Gentrification will ultimately be a powerful force in reshaping DC schools.
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