What a well thought out, well-articulated and intelligent response, Shabazz. A grown up equivalent to a childhood playground taunt. I can't believe they actually pay you for this.
How dare you, sir. How dare you presume to tell me or anybody else that we do what we do out of guilt. Perhaps that is your own guilt speaking...since you seem to have little to offer the community besides unmitigated snark and yellow journalism. Why don't you roll up your sleeves and DO SOMETHING to help these kids rather than just sit in your office bad-mouthing your so-called "white limousine liberals." You don't know the first thing about any of us. Yet had any of us painted you with the same broad-stroked brush you'd be crying foul while hiding like a taunting child behind a legacy of oppression that you exploit to serve your own purposes and nobody else's. Shame on you, sir. You are a shame to your profession.
Mr Shabazz, I have seen in other forums that proponents of TPS have given you additional relevant data that you persist in ignoring because they do not support your argument. That information is out there, however, and it is this:
Students with 3 or more years at TPS have a MUCH higher success rate (the 4th grade boasts 100% on both sections of the test and the 3rd grade) demonstrating that, given TIME to fix the deficits left in place by prior schools, TPS DOES in fact succeed. However, almost 80% of the TPS student body has been with the school for two years or less. I would point out that there is a REASON that the school's initial charter was given for 7 years and that is because people who know anything about education (yourself clearly excluded), know that learning takes time. The more learning or catching up that has to be done, the more time it takes.
The population that you yourself label as “difficult populations” were difficult long before they enrolled at The Project School. The fact that the fine people at TPS had the temerity to welcome them with open arms, work closely with their families and pour their hearts and souls into serving those children should NOT be held against them. People like you who like to slap a lock on a school door and dust off your hands so you can say you’ve worked to “fix” education have done and will continue to do more harm than good. Continuing to close schools instead of fix them serves NO ONE (except, perhaps, the private, for-profit charter school companies).
It's very telling when you state in your opening paragraph that you like charter schools because they can be closed down. We see from the beginning what your personal bias is and how you effectively fleshed out a column that holds fast to that bias, to the exclusion of relevant data and under the guise of having done extensive research. At best, you read the Cliff's Notes. You clearly didn't read the book.
Thank you so much for your fair reporting on our school. Your points are valid and your insight is appreciated.
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