Tuesday, August 23, 2005

The Spellings Report: Is The Secretary ACTing Up?

Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings is both happy and unhappy with the latest round of college entry ACT Assessment scores:
"The ACT Assessment scores contain reasons for both optimism and action. We are heartened that scores remained steady even while the number of test-takers increased. Since 2001, the number of test-takers has increased by 11 percent, with Hispanic students up 40 percent and African American students up 23 percent.

"But a deeper look at the data suggests that too many students remain unprepared for college. ACT's College Readiness Benchmarks show little or no improvement, particularly in math and science.

"President Bush is seeking to strengthen the foundational skills of incoming high school students so they can stay on track for college. We are working with Congress to encourage more schools to offer rigorous coursework and more students to take it. The time to help next year's graduating class is now."
Well.... the Secretary did state, "Back in Texas, we like to say, 'In God we trust - all others bring data.'"

More students taking "rigorous coursework" won't (by itself) translate into higher test scores. The schools can't do it by themselves. The dedication and hard work of students, parents, and educators has been, and will remain, the formula for academic success. It seems as though, for whatever reason, Secretary Spellings doesn't mention the need for parents and high school students to also be held accountable along with our public schools.

You can take your pick of what the MSM is saying about the latest administration of the ACT
here and there.
Entries for The Carnival Of Education are due tonight. Get the details here.

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