I would love it if I complained about the wrong things and people would step up and let me know. There is a definite hurt in my heart when I read articles which lead me to wonder if no one out there is REPORTING behind the scenes machinations which are labeled as something else – in this case, getting more students into college and said students are not adequately prepared for collegiate level work. Considering students going into college have had at least 12 years of education, it stands to reason that the last 12 years for these students was filled with inept attempts at college readiness yet labeled as college prep.
Interestingly, the majority of these students attended schooling, most likely high school in the State of CA which is how they are paying for in state tuition. WE KNOW what high schools they are coming from as they must list the code for their high school to take the SAT/ACT. Are some or all school districts (especially high schools) trying to pawn off their students who were socially promoted? Is it too scary to find out by demographics (S. Ca, N. Ca., Central Ca., counties, cities, etc.) where these students are coming from and how they are making the cut to get into a CSU? More importantly, when these students are ‘accepted’ to a CSU, which schools is it benefitting by saying these students were accepted to college?
KIPP has finally been more realistic in their release of information regarding students which graduate from a KIPP school http://www.kipp.org/files/dmfile/ExecutiveSummary.pdf and http://www.kipp.org/files/dmfile/CollegeCompletionReport.pdf which states the following:
89% of students who attended a KIPP Middle School in the past five years or longer have matriculated to college.
The U.S. National average of students completed college is 31% and KIPP students complete college at a rate of 33%.
KIPP is shooting for a 75% completion of college rate.
This transparency does not apply to all charter schools or school districts as the people in charge of marketing are able to state how many students were accepted to college without noting how much remedial education was required and/or if the students were able to make it through college on academic ability.
Embedded in the report above (I always read for the data, especially when my grad school alma mater is being represented on the cover of the report- Columbia University in NYC) is the true data which is very few students in America graduate college – no matter where they attended the first 12 years of school. 2% greater than the national norm is nice but not enough to actually support the previous claims which KIPP marketed to the public regarding being college ready and actually completing college.
Based on the number of students graduating KIPP schools and attending college versus the national numbers of college graduates, there is not a need to have more than a few handfuls of students graduate college to account for the 2% comparative difference. This is statistically relevant as stated in the report. Statistically relevant is not the same as ‘living up to the promises made’ via the marketing done by charter schools.
I keep hoping some graduate student will look at the numbers because the data exists. It is the interpretation of said data which is missing. If the data were good and could be manipulated as such, charter schools would be publishing it.