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  • How do you know if a school is good?

8:24 am July 16, 2009, by Laura Diamond

On Tuesday the state released which Georgia public schools met the adequate yearly progress testing goals required under the federal No Child Left Behind Act.

A few weeks before that came the release of how elementary and middle schools performed on the stateís CRCT exams.

State and national leaders say both sets of results can be used to measure a school. But on the blog weíve found too many problems with AYP and CRCT.

Many say the standards are too low. Others say too many people cheat. Some say administrators have figured out ways around the rules to make their schools look better than they really are.

If thatís the case, how do we know if a school is any good?

I know some parents go by what they feel. If teachers and the principal seem nice, itís a good school. If they return phone calls, itís a good school. If their child gets Aís, itís a good school.

Of course, we know kids can get high marks and not have a good grasp of basic skills.

Some like using ITBS scores, SAT scores or graduation rates. Even then, what do you compare your school to?

Gwinnett leaders tout that the district average is routinely higher than the state average. Does that say much?

Atlanta school leaders say the district excels when compared to other urban systems.

But one Atlanta parent I spoke with recently doesnít buy it. She said, ďthatís like comparing yourself to the other dummies in the classroom.Ē

How do you determine if a school is any good?


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