Thursday, September 15, 2011

Jefferson County school busing flunks test

An education law professor and national expert on school busing plans has tarred and feathered the nonsense in Jefferson County.

The Courier-Journal quotes busing expert Gary Orfield, “The current plan isn’t working.”

Orfield says that his final recommended changes were far greater than he originally thought would be needed. In the end, the existing elementary school busing plan needs massive overhaul to cut travel times.

Orfield also saw right through Jefferson County’s “magnet” school nonsense, which turns the concept of true magnet schools on its ear. Per Orfield, the programs “Aren’t very magnetic.”

Orfield really gets one favorite Bluegrass Institute position:

Students should pick schools,” he said, “not the other way around.”

Not everyone was impressed by the Orfield proposals. Teddy Gordon, the lawyer who won a 2007 US Supreme Court decision that threw out an earlier Jefferson County busing scheme certainly wasn’t buying this latest attempt to rework busing. Gordon asked, “How much more is JCPS going to rearrange the deck chairs on this Titanic?"

Most importantly, Gordon pointed out that busing “does not work in improving the education for any child in Louisville.”

Given the school system’s well-below average performance, including having five of the lowest scoring high schools in the recently announced ACT testing program, that is a pretty obvious conclusion to reach.

And, 40 years of busing has failed to fix the school district’s gruesome performance record.

No comments: