Friday, August 29, 2008

CCBOE - Call Your Office

Now that the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools has finally dropped the hammer on the Clayton County School District, I hope that the Clarke County Board of Education has taken notice. I hear that Clayton County is only the third school district to lose its accreditation in the last 40 years. Given the sorry state of public education across the country, that seems like far too few to me (but that is another issue).

Readers should remember that, just a couple of weeks ago, the Board summarily rejected a package of ethics policy reforms strongly recommended by SACS. The recommendations came after the local superintendent threatened to resign if the Board did not cease interfering in the day to day operations of the District, primarily regarding personnel matters.

Be that as it may, I will take the opportunity to again note that, despite the administrative and accreditation messes in which it finds itself, the Clayton County School District does just as good a job of educating its students as does its Classic City counterpart -- and at considerably less expense -- though I acknowledge that such a comparison may be damning by faint praise . As an aside, back in February I argued that public school accreditation, at least insofar as academic achievement is concerned, may be a meaningless concept.

As evidence that Clayton County compares favorably with Clarke County, for far less money, consider the following:

Per Pupil Expenditures FY 2007
Clayton County $7453.37
Clarke County $10,746.94

AYP 2007-2008
Clayton County 50.8%
Clarke County 15.8%

National Test Scores and Graduation Rates 2006-2007

ACT Composite
Clayton County 17.2
Clarke County 18.2

SAT (verbal and math)

Clayton County 866
Clarke County 961

Graduation Rate
Clayton County 71.8%
Clarke County 58.4%

Like I said, I hope that the folks over on Mitchell Bridge Road are paying attention.

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