Grading and Ranking Schools
If you listen to what just about any politician has to say about America’s schools, you’ll hear the word “failing” quite a bit. The fact is that education is a hot topic and it is one that can be used to inspire people to vote. But how much can you actually trust what a politician has to say about the American public education system? How are the public schools in America actually doing?
In 2017, Jack Schneider released a book called Beyond Test Scores in which he suggests that it is well past time to start rethinking the way we measure school performance.
Schneider writes that while test scores are the go-to metric used to evaluate a school’s performance, they don’t really paint an accurate picture. Using Somerville, Massachusetts, a highly diverse urban school district, as a case study, Schneider presents a new framework to assess the effectiveness of the American education system. Read on to learn more about Schneider’s approach and to see data on how American public schools are really doing.
Changes to the U.S. News Ranking System
Each year, U.S. News publishes a list of the Best High Schools in America. For the 2018 school year, U.S. News ranked over 2,700 schools – some of the names topping the list were BASIS Scottsdale (AZ), Meridian School (TX), and the Baccalaureate School for Global Education (NY).
If you were to peruse the 2019 list of Best High Schools, you would notice quite a change. Not only does the 2019 list
The quality of your child’s education will have a significant impact on the rest of his life. The education he receives while he is young will prepare him for higher education and, eventually, a career. The challenge is, however, that there are many different types of schools to choose from. If you want your child to receive the best education available to him, consider enrolling him in a magnet school.
What is a Magnet School?
A magnet school is a type of public school that, while still part of the local public school system, has a particular curricular focus. In many ways, magnet schools are just another type of school but there are some key features which set these schools apart. In the United States, magnet schools are developed around a core set of five principles according to the Magnet Schools of America organization. These five pillars include the following things:
- Diversity – Part of what sets magnet schools apart from other schools is the focus on diversity which gives students a global educational experience. Through recruitment and lottery systems, magnet schools strive to develop a student body that is reflective of the surrounding community.
- Innovative Curriculum and Professional Development – Each magnet school has a particular theme and the curriculum is relevant to that theme, designed to prepare students for higher education and eventual career success.
- Academic Excellence – Magnet schools are committed to multi-dimensional instruction which is focused on the needs of the students. Various assessment strategies are used to monitor student