FL Education Commissioner Pam Stewart should stop digging: It’s a lot to expect from black students
On Tuesday, the board passed a revised strategic plan that says that by 2018, it wants 90 percent of Asian students, 88 percent of white students, 81 percent of Hispanics and 74 percent of black students to be reading at or above grade level. For math, the goals are 92 percent of Asian kids to be proficient, whites at 86 percent, Hispanics at 80 percent and blacks at 74 percent. It also measures by other groupings, such as poverty and disabilities, reported the Palm Beach Post.
The plan has infuriated many community activists in Palm Beach County and across the state.
This below is from a press call she did to tamp down criticism. We’re only setting lower standards for some groups — because it will help them to do better.
Oh, right. But in short, they are going from, we want all kids to perform at the same level, to saying, yeah, it’s a stretch for this, or that group, but we can try, right? How is that encouraging? Talk about a mixed message, mixed every way but racially.
The new achievement targets provide a blueprint by which those groups now behind would improve at a faster rate than others, eventually catching up. If the rate of improvement detailed in the plan — a 36 percentage point increase for black students by 2018 — could be achieved for the next decade, all of Florida’s students would be proficient in both subjects by the 2022-23 school year, Stewart said.
Is that realistic?
“Though we are being ambitious , we believe we have the tools in place in Florida to be able to move our students in this manner,” she said.
But during her comments, Stewart also noted that the targets represent a rate of improvement “more ambitious than has ever been seen.”