Wednesday, September 28, 2011

School choice remains under fire in Harlan County

A school choice squabble between the Harlan County School District and the Harlan Independent School District is still broiling.

The Harlan Daily Enterprise reports that a supposed district to district transfer agreement between the two school systems has fallen apart.

The district to district transfer agreement had gone through a mediation process, but Harlan County Schools then sent a detailed paperwork passage to the independent district that “does not represent our understanding of the mediation,” according to Harlan Independent superintendent David Johnson.

Johnson went on to say:

“Because Harlan Independent School is committed to the right of Harlan County families to chose where their children are educated, we will not agree to a contract that asks currently enrolled students to leave our schools now or in the future.”

Johnson also said his district is committed to school choice, and it’s not hard to understand why parents in Harlan County would want that. In the new combined math and reading proficiency rates just released by the Kentucky Department of Education, Harlan Independent’s rate is 10 points higher than Harlan County’s.

So, Good job, Mr. Johnson.

And, shame on Harlan County for putting their selfish ‘adult interests’ ahead of the best interests of students. Harlan County, you need to stop fighting to destroy competition with your monopoly mentality and instead overcome the competition with better schools.

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