Rounding Up Usual Suspects

, Malcolm A. Kline, Leave a comment

In the cinematic classic Casablanca, corrupt police chief Louis Renault deflects official attention away from a troublesome crime scene by instructing his minions to “round up the usual suspects.” The Education Establishment appears to be engaged in a similar exercise when it tries to explain dropout rates and other such problematic measurements.

In fact, they had such a confab on July 22, 2010. After reporting a 73.4 percent high school graduation rate and an 8 percent dropout rate in public secondary schools (which does not compute), the College Board goes on to warn of a shortage of counselors and a drop in public funding. “Although the trend in the ratio is decreasing, it is far from the recommended student-to-counselor ratio of 250 students per counselor,” the College Board Advocacy & Policy Center cautions.

To be sure, troubled youth need mentors and lately we’ve had lots of troubled youth. Parents should be doing that before the kids get to school.

At the least, they should be willing to drop everything once they are called. Otherwise, if they have nothing worth dropping all for, why bother juggling?

Naturally, this latest report from the College Board got rave reviews from “education professionals.” For her part, Yolanda Copeland-Morgan of Syracuse University found the report “admirably broad.”

Copeland-Morgan, vice-president for enrollment management at Syracuse, is looking for “equity and fairness” in higher education funding. Specifically, Copeland-Morgan, who also serves as director of scholarships and aid at the university, is concerned with “access to financial aid.”

Meanwhile, American taxpayers are paying upwards of half a trillion dollars on K-12 alone.

Malcolm A. Kline is the Executive Director of Accuracy in Academia.