Opinion: School District Failures: Don't Blame the Kids
Scott Himelstein is the President of San Diegans 4 Great Schools, director of the Center for Education Policy and Law at the University of San Diego, and president of the California Community Colleges Board of Governors for 2011. He is a proponent of the Accountability and Student Performance Initiative, which is currently qualifying for the next citywide ballot.
Voice of San Diego -- There's plenty of blame to go around for the San Diego Unified School District's dismal record in promoting student achievement, but placing blame on the victims — the students themselves — is not fair, accurate or constructive.
Yet a recent Voice of San Diego commentary by Vladimir Kogan ("Is San Diego Unified 'Failing' Its Students? Nope." June 15, 2011) did exactly that, questioning the need for school reform because, "As any respectable education researcher will tell you, the primary determinants of student academic performance — socioeconomic status, English proficiency and parental involvement — are fixed long before students ever set a foot in the classroom."
What a chilling and fatalistic view of public education. (Full Story)