Thursday, July 20

"Not a perfect law."

Oh, let's not be hasty. The Indianapolis Star:
With all of its middle and high schools failing to meet federal expectations, Indianapolis Public Schools has told 10,000 families they may transfer their children.
But the widespread failure under No Child Left Behind guidelines gives parents few choices of where to transfer their children.
Dawn Robertson said she received a letter Saturday from the district offering her the option. Her daughter, Allyssa, attends Harshman Middle School's math, science and technology magnet program on the Near Eastside. But the letter left Robertson confused because the district offered her daughter the option of moving to a school where students scored much worse on statewide exams.

The school suggested as an alternative will face no sanctions for failing to meet standards because it does not receive Title 1 money. Title 1 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 was formerly intended to channel federal monies to children in poverty for remedial education. As amended its current intention is the cudgeling of children in poverty to appease the crypto-racist tendencies of the electorate. Though that's not exactly how the law reads. Hence our own title, from the statement of Indiana Department of Education spokeswoman Mary Jane Michalak: "[The sanctions] only apply to Title I schools. It's definitely not a perfect law."

Ah, but there's recourse, right? We're not Leaving Any Child Behind, are We?
If a district has no better performing school to which children could transfer, it has the option to ask a neighboring school district to accept transfers. The neighboring district is under no obligation to take them, though, and IPS officials said no Marion County school systems have offered to accept IPS students.

Okay, history pop quiz, courtesy the Star:
Marion County
On Jan. 1, 1970, the city of Indianapolis expanded its boundaries to include all of Marion County. This consolidation was called unified government, or UniGov. The reason for UniGov was to consolidate the 60 governments, 23 cities and towns and nine townships into a 29-member City-County Council. Excluded were the municipalities of Speedway, Southport, Lawrence, Beech Grove; six special purpose corporations; school districts; township fire departments; township property assessment and poor-relief functions; and the Marion County court system. Certain constitutionally defined Marion County elected-offices were also excluded from UniGov. [emphasis mine]

So there's your No Child Left Behind, students. People in one part of Indianapolis ain't required to lift a finger to help children from the other side of an imaginary line.

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