If it’s Friday…

it’s Talking Points with the Founding Fathers!

Subject:  Keeping Score

Reives and “we the people”  1    Hayes 0

Robert Reives has guts when it comes to the EDC.  Thank you Commissioner Reives for standing up.  The EDC had been running like a pack of wolves endlessly searching for sheep.  This patriot wants to know if our EDC board members are so good, why is our unemployment rate still around 12 – 13%.  Did you know that Lee County’s rate in May 2010 was 12.1%? (http://www.wral.com/news/state/page/4879060/)

So nothing has changed in over a year.  How many times did our Governor show up to talk job “creation” in our county?  How many promises were made by the EDC? Where are the jobs?  Come to think of it, where’s Bob? I sure hope the commissioners or the county manager do not in haste give the new position to Bob Huets without thoroughly interviewing other qualified candidates.  I’m sure if Bob is made to prove  his worth he could rattle off stats.  I hear he’s a very intuitive guy until he’s asked about accountability. Then he just conveniently forgets or disappears!  I bet if we looked in wikipedia we would find his name under “Don’t remember.”,  “No.  There are no guidelines.”, “Of course, Mr. Parkdale, Frontier, LSA America, Allied Crawford Steele CEOs, here’s the check.  We really won’t hold you to creating the jobs.” And the beat goes on and on.

Dear patriots, the EDC needs more than an overhaul and a coalition.  It needs a grave.

And if I didn’t know any better I would think Richard Hayes is still the BOC chair.  He acts like Bob Etheridge – Arrogant and can’t stand not being able to call the shots.  I do not believe he is reading the same dictionary as Bob Huets.  Whereas Mr. Huets cannot find a word that explains his actions, Mr. Hayes won’t shut up.  His comments lately are questionable.   The statement that most of Lee County is with him on whatever he feels our school system should get is almost as absurb as President Obama stating that 80% of the country want higher taxes! If that’s the truth, then how come a “generic” republican would beat Mr. Obama by as much as 8 percentage points (according to the latest Gallop poll) if the election was held today? Pinnochio would be proud. 

And let’s recall Hayes hissing at the citizens who come to the BOC meetings and don’t agree with him.  Arrogance on display.  Hayes – like your American idol said to Rep. Stone, if you don’t want to get letters you shouldn’t be in politics.  Richard, if you don’t want to hear the opposition, resign.  Comes with the job.

Second score keeping:   Moss  1   Kids 0

While Mr. Moss decides to sue our county commissioners and  citizens for more money,  and while he makes $194,000 a year and gets an $18,000 yearly deferred salary benefit and a vote of confidence from the BOE, and while our principals get raises, and while our teachers and assistants get pink slips (although the General Assembly has fully funded), only two schools in the Lee County School System make the grade.  Only two are reporting improved test scores. 

The timing of this report couldn’t be better.  I believe the taxpayers have a right to know why the scores were lower before any of the $600,000 for two consecutive years, not one as most of us thought, that was brokered by Mr. Benedict Arnold Crumpton and Mr. Moss is doled out.  It’s not the money that is the issue.  We continue to give education more and more of our taxpayer dollars and don’t see the results that we are promised.    

Maybe it was the coaching.  No, not the basketball fiasco lawsuit Bonnie Almond was (is) involved in.  Interesting tidbit:   It seems  her name shows up in as many controversies as Jeff Moss.  That’s a topic for another posting. 

Must be the coaching of third graders to boot up those laptops and write letters that plead the EOG scores would suffer if the General Assembly didn’t dole out more money and if our county commissioners withheld millions of dollars.  Just the other day I heard my neighbor’s third grade kid saying that the results on this year’s AYP would bring tears to our eyes and that playgrounds were being shut down all over the state.  I gave him a tissue and something to read to take his mind off the awful state of Lee County Schools: 1776.  Poor kid.  If he’s going to cry, at least cry over something far more worth the tears:  the lives lost in the battles to free America from tyranny! 

Third Score Keeping:   Lee Co Citizens:  1   Tramway Elementary:  0

News Break:   Tramway staff asked grief counselors to come to the school.  Seems UNC TV has  hired Melanie Hawes and Ann Beal to host the new morning show that will come on right after Sesame Street – “Are you Smarter than a Third Grader?”  The show will be sponsored by the LCSS and Rosetta Stone.  

Have a good Friday.

Patrick Henry

“Give me liberty, and not liability.”

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About Patrick Henry

"Give me liberty, or give me death!"
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7 Responses to If it’s Friday…

  1. Sanford27330 says:

    The results that only two schools showed improved scores are a bit mistaken. I believe 9 schools had improved scores by the percentage of students who scored at a proficient level, 13 had either expected growth or high growth, but only two achieved Adequate Yearly Progress, which means they improved enough to reach the level of 100 percent proficiency in both math and reading by 2014. In fact one school made AYP, but overall proficiency at the school went down. It’s an odd statistic.

    Not making AYP doesn’t mean not improving, it means not improving fast enough to meet No Child Left Behind’s statistic.

  2. Patrick Henry says:

    Sanford27330, Are you suggesting I read the article wrong? Ok. I’ll go back and look at it.

    What still puzzles me is that our BOE and Mr. Moss had more money to spend this past year and the scores at ALL of Lee County schools were not proficient enough for AYP. Why not? We’re told our superintendent is worth his weight in gold. Why are our schools not performing at top levels? Should we expect failure now that the wish list has been cut? Or will we see the superintendent sue the taxpayers claiming that the scores will go further down without being fully funded? Wish I knew the answer to that!

    • Sanford27330 says:

      Mr. Henry,

      I didn’t intend to suggest anything other than looking at AYP is tricky. It doesn’t necessarily show whether a school is actually improving or not.

      To achieve AYP for this year and the two that follow, 88 percent of all students have to be proficient in math and 71 percent of all students have to be proficient in reading, through all of the subgroups of a school (I believe you have to have 40 members of a subgroup enrolled for it to count), or be close enough to receive “safe harbor” (I think if a group is within 10% of the proficiency target for a subgroup safe harbor is granted). Last year the schools had to reach 77 percent in math and 43 percent in reading. It’s conceivable a school could have earned AYP in 2009-2010 with only 48 percent of their students being proficient in reading yet not made AYP in 2010-2011 with, say, a 12 percentage point increase (25 percent gain) in reading.

      If you look at the middle schools in Lee County, there are 29 subgroups for each of them. The schools have to have those levels of proficiency in all 29 subgroups or they won’t earn adequate yearly progress.

      All 3 traditional middle schools showed progress this year. SanLee improved by 4.3 percentage points, East improved by 2 percentage points and West Lee improved by 1.2 percentage points. None of them achieved AYP because they didn’t reach the target goals across all of their subgroups, but the schools on the whole did better this year on the end of grade tests than they did last year.

      In contrast, Lee Early College had a 2.5 percentage point drop in their composite this year, but they achieved AYP because they met their 5 target goals. Tramway’s composite score was 1.6 percentage points lower this year than last year, but they made AYP because, again, they met the target scores for their 17 subgroups. I don’t intend to dismiss the scores for either of these schools, because having 85 percent of your students achieve proficiency is obviously something few schools are doing anywhere in the country, so I send a hearty congratulations to their students and staff.

      Whether or not a school reaches AYP on an annual basis can only offer limited insight into how well they are doing.

      The data I used is from this link: http://lee.schoolfusion.us/modules/groups/homepagefiles/cms/929615/File/NEWS/ABCs-AYP%207.21.11_1.pdf?sessionid=c7b5fd4c05d26d8f953fc4c705811107

      Thanks for your time on what I know is a lengthy response. Thanks for the forum.

  3. Goose says:

    So are the subgroups inclusive? In other words could a white, Hispanic with limited English, disabilities, and economically disadvantaged count as 6 failures. (School as a whole, white, Hispanic, limited English. disabled, and economically disadvantaged). Complex statistic indeed!

  4. Sanford27330 says:

    Just for housekeeping purposes, I went back through DPI’s NCLB resources. For “safe harbor” schools have to reduce the amount of students who aren’t considered proficient in a group by 10 percent over the previous year, as well as show progress in attendance (the other academic indicator in elementary and middle schools) or the cohort graduation rate (the OAI in high schools).

    Goose, to answer your question I just found this information on the following website: http://www.ncpublicschools.org/nclb/faqs/studentgroups/
    The site states, “A student can only be in one group (School as a Whole) if he/she is part of a group represented by less than 40 students across the tested grades in a school. On the other hand, a student can be in as many as five groups, depending on his or her designation. Some of the state’s most at-risk students are represented in several student groups.”

    If a student in many groups passes, that’s good for all groups. If a student in many groups doesn’t pass, obviously that’s going to make it more difficult to meet AYP. AYP is extremely detailed.

  5. LetLibertyPrevail says:

    sanford27330,

    you deserve a mighty big thank you for the information you’ve provided. why doesn’t our trusty hometown newspaper do this stuff for their readers? Guess it isn’t juicy enough to educate the citizens on how to interpret the results.

    • Goose says:

      LetLiberty, I am not a Herald fan, in most cases journalists are among the math challenged with more language skills than math skills. (Can you picture anybody on their staff understanding these numbers enough to interpret them, let alone teaching the readers to do so?) I agree with you these statistics are to dry for their readers. This way they can spin the numbers the way they want. It appears to me that they just reported the numbers from the LCSS press release, spin and all.

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