Sunday, October 07, 2007

Ken Cuccinelli Ad Distorts Fairfax Schools Achievements

Glant, over at Raising Kaine, has a good post about Ken Cuccinelli's latest television commerical. Apparently, he slams Janet Oleszek because during her term on the school board test scores have remained flat.

Now, that would be terrible. Except for one minor point the good senator left out. Test scores have put Fairfax schools consistently in the top 5% of the nation. Here's the quote:

What the ad did not say is that the test results have been among the top 5% in the nation. Remaining consistently in the top 5% is an amazing achievement. But Ken Cuccinelli portrays it as a failure.

What the ad did not say is that, as a result of the misbegotten No Child Left Behind rules, Fairfax County, with its large ESL population, is forced to include results from students who are not ready to take test in English.

What the ad did not say is that Ken Cuccinelli is part of the Republican majority in Richmond that has refused to fully fund the Fairfax County schools, so that the county has had to raise the property tax to fund the difference.

What the ad also doesn't tell you is that public schools are forced to keep students who are trouble makers and disruptive in classes. Private schools regularly throw out kids who raise hell in school and can't be controlled. In fact, some of the more prestigious private schools boot kids out for having failing grades. They cherry pick their students so no wonder they look like they're doing a great job. Comparing public schools, who have to take everybody, and private schools, who can be selective, is like comparing apples and oranges.

But despite those differences, the Fairfax County Public School system has remained in the top 5% Damned that flat rate. Pretty soon you might think public education actually works!

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