Sunday, 25 August 2013

Lousy-ana school districts

Louisiana?  Lousy-ana is more like it, especially it's "education" system.  Did anyone really believe that "private schools" which inflict ignorant, dogmatic religion upon children would lead to better education?

The "textbooks" those places used weren't your typical creationist drivel.  They were the books which described slavery as "triangular trade", and eradicated any mention of Thomas Jefferson who advocated the separation of cult and state.

Louisiana Sends Kids to Private Religious Schools, Test Scores Don’t Go Up

The school year in Louisiana has begun under a changed landscape. Last year saw the expansion of Gov. Bobby Jindal’s sweeping school voucher program, officially called the Louisiana Scholarship Program, statewide. The program gives parents the choice to attend participating private schools for free if their local public school is low performing.

The program was funded with taxpayer money from the Minimum Foundation Fund (MFP). This is the state’s per pupil allocation fund for its public schools. The logic was since that student was leaving a public school, the funds allocated for that student could be used at their new private school. This resulted in almost $30 million dollars in funds diverted from public schools in the last school year into private entities.

In other words, the best way to improve failing schools is to put fewer resources into them.

In May of this year, the Louisiana Supreme Court ruled that the manner of funding violated the state’s constitution and the state must repay the $30 million dollars to the public schools.

Now faced with trying to find funds for the estimated $45 million dollar cost for the voucher program, Louisiana must also deal with the reality that voucher students are performing worse on standardized tests than their public school counterparts. In results released also in May, 60 percent of voucher students failed to score at or above grade level in the LEAP testing given to third through eighth graders. The 40 percent proficiency level of voucher students was significantly lower than the state average of 69 percent.

The testing at the private voucher schools are for accountability purposes since they receive taxpayer funds. Seven of the schools performed so badly for the past three years (less than 25% of the voucher students scored at proficient levels in any year), they are no longer allowed to accept new voucher students (current students can remain).

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