EDUCATION

FEBRUARY 2017

WHY THE EDUCATION ESTABLISHMENT HATES CURSIVE
By Bruce Deitrick Price, December 23, 2016

Modern educators are dismissive of cursive. Indeed, many are hostile to such a degree that you should immediately suspect that they are up to something.

Here is an education journalist providing the Party Line: "Cursive writing is an anachronism. Spending any classroom time on it is comparable to teaching how to use an abacus: it's interesting as a history lesson, and probably offers some side benefits, but it is not at all practical as a day-to-day skill in the modern, connected world."

A professor of education argues: "Cursive should be allowed to die. In fact, it's already dying, despite having been taught for decades." (You can depend on education professors to confuse "decades" with "centuries.")

When you read such swaggering attacks on cursive, you might assume that the question is settled. The old geezer is dead, so take him off life support. You rarely see thoughtful praise of cursive. Even people who are sentimentally inclined to support cursive can't think of many reasons to do so.

I propose a higher truth: the Education Establishment is always a reliable guide to what is good. If our socialist professors rail against X, you know that X is educational gold. Here are eight reasons why cursive is valuable and we should fight to keep it in the classroom:

1) LEARN TO READ FASTER. The main thing is that learning cursive accelerates learning to read. If it did nothing else, this alone would still make it a huge asset. Cursive obviously makes a child more aware of letter forms and how words are spelled. Don Potter, the phonics guru, states: "Any attempt to educate American children that neglects the direct development of fluent handwriting is doomed to fail. The little dribble of handwriting done with the typical phonics programs is FAR below optimal."

2) HIGHER I.Q. Reading itself has unexpected benefits. Namely, it makes you smarter. Some researchers speculate that the brain rewires itself to become better at reading. K-12 is full of inferior methods that let children remain poor readers for years. Their I.Q.s will not advance; their academic skills will not improve. In contrast, cursive accelerates reading, which will accelerate everything else.

3) PRECISION. Cursive requires that young students do something precisely. Not sloppily, not incompletely, not according to personal whim. Cursive says: This is an M. Draw it exactly like the diagram. Practice until you can do it correctly. Penmanship is the perfect path to precision.

Precision is a valuable concept for young people. They will learn to read faster and think faster, and it will influence how they approach everything else. When you spell a word, it needs to be spelled a certain way. Grammar says words must be used in particular ways.

So much of what they do in public schools nowadays is a blanket endorsement of sloppiness. Kids can do anything any way they want. That is not education. That's "academic child abuse."

4) FINE MOTOR SKILLS. Even detractors of phonics acknowledge that it teaches fine motor skills. Simply holding a pencil is a big accomplishment for little kids. We know from the history of carpets that little kids are capable of extraordinarily delicate work. If children are working within the context of their family, this work can be largely beneficial. They learn how to create something really complicated, with lots of counting required.

But where do kids today get a chance to perform anything exacting, even for ten minutes? Few children build models anymore. Videogames require the same actions over and over again. Cursive demands both physical and mental dexterity.

5) CALLIGRAPHY. This word, which is almost pure Greek, means beautiful writing. Learning cursive introduces a child to the world of logos, type design, and graphic design generally. Children can compare cursive writing to typefaces they see in the newspaper. They can design their own names in different ways – each is a logo. Many products have script logos; today's students cannot read these beautiful names.

6) HISTORY. When children learn cursive, they can read the Declaration of Independence and many other historical documents. They can read letters from older relatives.

7) INDIVIDUAL SIGNATURES. Cursive allows for personal expression. A person's signature is nearly as unique as a fingerprint. Nowadays, children learn to print their signatures; these will not be distinctive, probably causing lots of confusion in the legal system. Probably our collectivist educators like the idea of all people looking the same and having almost identical signatures. The world will be more boring.

8) TAKING NOTES. Handwriting is faster than printing. That was the main reason they developed it. If students want to take notes in the classroom, cursive is the obvious choice.

The aforementioned education journalist specifically squealed: "I shudder to think of the time I spent learning cursive: 15 minutes of schooling, every day."

Let's think about that. What, in the typical public school, is accomplished in the entire day? Almost nothing, judging by literacy and other test scores. But we're supposed to believe that "almost nothing" reduced by 15 minutes is a big deal.

Let's turn it around. Apparently, 15 minutes a day is all it takes to learn cursive. Now, that's a bargain, readily and cheaply available for every child in America. A mere 15 minutes a day will result in higher I.Q., faster and better reading, a greater appreciation of the aesthetic aspects of type, faster note-taking, one's very own signature, more coordinated fingers, and the ability to find out what Thomas Jefferson is famous for. Cursive may be the best deal offered in K-12 education.

QED: The pattern I see is that our Education Establishment tends to promote methods that don't work. If you are engaged in "the deliberate dumbing down of America," cursive is your natural enemy.

Probably the real reason our experts condemn cursive is because cursive actually works.

Bruce Deitrick Price explains theories and methods on his education sites Improve-Education.org. For info on his four new novels, see his literary site Lit4u.com.

Reprinted with permission from the American Thinker: http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2016/12/why_the_education_establishment_hates_cursive.html#ixzz4TgRlGm00

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MAY 2016

KILLING KNOWLEDGE IN K-12
By Bruce Deitrick Price, April 1, 2016

The first schools, the first great universities, were focused on knowledge: figuring out what it is, collecting and verifying it, and passing it on from teachers to students.

Our K-12 schools have drifted far away from this ideal. Knowledge itself is disparaged. The transmission of knowledge is sneered at. These shifts are huge and destructive, and they are by design.

Consider what any real school looks like: judo schools, medical schools, language schools, flight schools, bartending schools, flower-arranging schools. All possess a body of knowledge they strive to give to the next generation.

That's not what our public schools are focused on now.

It used to be well understood that the human race is divided into uneducated people (they don't know anything) and educated people (they know lots of information). Creating educated people takes work, by the school and the student. K-12 no longer believes in the importance of that work.

What changed?

John Dewey and his socialist brotherhood, a hundred years ago, decided they would use the public schools to transform the entire society. They first had to seize control of what is taught in K-12 classrooms. Dewey and his successors settled on two major strategies for controlling what educators call "content."

First, they discarded as much of the traditional curriculum as possible – i.e., knowledge was thrown out the window by the boxload. Secondly, they invented many techniques for scrambling classroom instruction so that knowledge was no longer taught efficiently.

So we have here, across a wide front, a well organized war against knowledge and the transmission of knowledge. Dumbed down schools were created intentionally in order to create dumbed down students. That, my research suggests, is the horrible reality.

Consider for a moment how extraordinarily successful this campaign has been. Jay Leno used to go "Jaywalking" and find people who didn't know which ocean is to the west of California. That same tradition has been continued by Jesse Watters on Fox News and others. In this video, Watters asks people what country we fought against in the Revolutionary War. People say things like "the French?"

To repeat, this rising tide of ignorance is not an accident. It's too relentless to be anything but intentional. So how exactly do our social engineers achieve what Charlotte Iserbyt called "the deliberate dumbing down of America"?

First, they invent redundant, overlapping sophistries that mandate teaching less, always less. Multiculturalism says you can teach only about foreign cultures. Relevance says you can teach only about the child's own life. Readiness says you can teach only what children are ready to learn. Self-esteem says you can teach only information the child finds easy to learn. Constructivism says you can't teach directly – kids have to assemble knowledge for themselves. You can't expect children to actually know anything, therefore no memorization should be required. That's six separate gimmicks that guarantee, in toto, a scorched earth policy toward the acquisition of knowledge.

Secondly, you invent sophistical gimmicks that will jumble whatever little knowledge can still be taught. We see this, par excellence, in New Math circa 1962, where basic arithmetic was mixed up with complicated high school- and college-level material. Bingo: total confusion and kids learning little. In reading, you have bogus instruction known as Look-say, Whole Word, Dolch words, and so on. The schools spend years teaching children to read, but few students become fluent readers. (This is happening year after year. Don't we have to assume that schools are achieving the results they want?)

The schools always profess hostility to direct instruction, mastery of basics, memorization, traditional testing – in short, all the things that work. They teach as little as possible, and then they create a disconnect with what little they do teach. The result is probably the least educated general population we've had in a century.

One particularly striking result is that students have little sense of historical time. You can ask kids in college which came first, World War II, World War I, or the Civil War, and many won't know. Students aren't told to memorize dates, people, or places, so when American citizens are asked, on the 4th of July, what country did we break away from, they look at you in amazement: who knows stuff like that?

People should give credit where credit is due: our Education Establishment, in its war against knowledge, has been cunningly successful.

Where does all this go? The American people are increasingly like a big blob of jelly. They can't think critically because they don't know much. If leaders lie to them, who is going to realize this? If the media tell them only half of what's going on, how could they know the difference?

Thomas Jefferson said it long ago: you can be ignorant or free, not both.

Our professional education class, what I call the Education Establishment, is hopelessly incompetent (or deeply into subversion). Either way, Americans have to get much more involved in improving their local schools. Be sure that every kid can read by the end of the first grade. Make sure they learn basic arithmetic the old-fashioned way. And teach them lots of facts, one after the other.

It would probably be easy to teach children a new fact each hour, assuming that the fact was taught dramatically and repeated at intervals. But for the sake of discussion, let's settle on teaching one fact each day. Think what that would add up to in a few years. Our middle school students would know more than our college graduates do today.

Only one thing is required for this dramatic turnaround. Schools have to love knowledge.

At present, our public schools are having a squalid love affair with ignorance.

Bruce Deitrick Price explains theories and methods on his education sites Improve-Education.org. (For info on his four new novels, see his literary site Lit4u.com.)

Reprinted with permission from the American Thinker: http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2016/03/killing_knowledge_in_k12.html#ixzz44b724H2n

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MARCH 2015

WHATEVER HAPPENED TO PHONICS?
By Bruce Deitrick Price, January 24, 2015

One of the most important books in America’s intellectual history, Why Johnny Can't Read, by Rudolf Flesch, was published 60 years ago in 1955. This book sold 8 million copies, was the talk of the country, and explained why children need phonics to become successful readers.

There are many fascinating aspects to this story. Flesch fled from Austria just before the Germans invaded his country; at that time he was pursuing a law degree. In the United States, he went to Columbia University and earned a doctorate in English. Safe to say, he was exceptionally smart. In addition, he was obsessed with lucid language. He flourished, as Wikipedia notes, “as a writing teacher, plain-English consultant and author. He published many books on the subject of clear, effective communication: How to Test Readability (1951), How to Write Better (1951), The Art of Plain Talk (1946), The Art of Readable Writing (1949), The ABC of Style: A Guide to Plain English (1964), and Rudolf Flesch on Business Communications: How to Say What You Mean in Plain English (1972),” and others.

So we arrive at a sad, unexpected irony. This master communicator believed that he had settled the reading matter forever. Phonics was essential. Whole Word (also known by such names as Look-say, sight-words, Dolch words, Whole Language, etc.) was an obvious fraud and as well dangerous to children. Flesch assumed that any dunce would understand this. He was wrong.

Flesch explained that if you make children memorize English words as graphic designs, you have changed English into a hieroglyphic language. You have thrown away 40 centuries of human history, making English much like Egyptian circa 2000 BC. You have turned a phonetic language, which most children can learn to read in first grade, into a symbol-language that most children can never learn to read. Nobody could possibly be that stupid, right? Wrong.

Here is how Flesch explained our predicament in the famous 1955 book:

We have decided to…learn to read English as if it were Chinese. One word after another after another after another. If we want to read materials with a vocabulary of 10,000 words, then we have to memorize 10,000 words; if we want to go to the 20,000 word range, we have to learn, one by one, 20,000 words; and so on. We have thrown 3500 years of civilization out the window and have gone back to the age of Hammurabi.”

Certainly that settles the matter, right? Unfortunately, no.

Here’s the huge problem. Flesch did not close the deal. He believed he had, of course. He thought that if you say 2+2 = 4, what else is there to say? That was his mistake. He needed to explain it again and again and again (and again) until every parent and teacher understood, and no dishonest literacy professor could claim to miss the point.

Flesch underestimated our Education Establishment. These professors of education, essentially a far-left cult, had forced sight-words into the schools circa 1935 and they were not going to let go. They would pretend, they would lie, they would wiggle like a snake to victory any way possible.

So what did they do? They ridiculed Rudolf Flesch (“Devil in the Flesch”) and went right on doing all the bad things they had previously been doing. They formed the International Reading Association (IRA) to consolidate their gains, and to quarantine Flesch. Further, they fashioned endless sophistries to justify their incorrect methods. They kept the field of reading mired in jargon and techno-talk.

It is arguably one of the greatest tragedies the country suffered in the 20th century. To repeat, Rudolf Flesch did not close the deal. Flesch, the master of clear English, underestimated the malevolent power of unclear English. He underestimated the power of lockstep orthodoxy, as when thousands of professors agree to support every wrong detail of an absurd doctrine.

Still today, many schools in the United States proudly boast on their websites that they use Dolch words or the equivalent. Millions of students are still being turned into functional illiterates.

What can be done now to rectify this terrible mistake?

First, every parent should take a few minutes to understand why phonics is essential but memorizing sight-words one by one makes no sense at all. Very few people, for example, could memorize even 100 license plates or instantly identify 100 celebrities. Even when you know the name, you can’t always bring it up from your memory in a fraction of a second. It's no different with sight-words.

Second, teachers who haven’t read “Why Johnny Can’t Read” (or “Why Johnny STILL Can’t Read,” 1981) should acknowledge that they are clueless amateurs. Such a person should not be allowed in an elementary school. Why? Because you will not be able to recognize inferior methods and the damage they’re doing to children. All phonics experts confidently assert that 99% of children can learn to read in the first grade. If you are accepting a lower level of achievement, then you are part of the problem.

Third, our newspapers and other media can help people to understand these matters. By remaining detached and silent, our media remain a big part of the problem.

There is a maxim in police work: “lie once, lie always.” Translation: if you lied, you can no longer be considered a reliable witness. That would seem to blackball all the people who gave us Whole Word from any further involvement with literacy. Legal codes sometimes stipulate who can testify at a trial; for example, convicted criminals might be excluded because it is assumed they will lie. There is another category of people who can’t testify: those with a financial interest in the outcome. Once again, there goes the entire Education Establishment. They cannot testify about reading methods because they’re all making money from the inferior methods now used. It’s not just all the expensive but worthless textbooks. When children don’t learn to read after a year or two, they are sent to interventions, sent for psychiatric counseling, sent to pick up their Ritalin. There are billions of dollars being made off of stunted readers, i.e., children victimized by Whole Word. Lots of people are making lots of money from the cash cow known as K-12 education. (So-called dyslexia, all by itself, has become a cash cow.) Are these pretend-experts now going to start telling the truth? Unlikely.

Don’t trust anything they say. Trust Rudolf Flesch. His books are available on Amazon. Used versions might sell for pennies. Read even a few chapters and you will be free at last.

For a great look back at the reading situation as of 1975, read Samuel Blumenfeld’s wonderful speech at the Reading Reform Foundation that year.

Blumenfeld also chronicled our tragedy in his book “Victims of Dick and Jane” where he said:

"Flesch naively assumed back then that after the educators read his book, they would recognize the error of their ways and return to the sane phonetic method of teaching. What he didn't understand, however, was the political agenda behind what those progressive professors were doing. Their goal was to use education as a means for changing America from an individualist, capitalist, religious society into a socialist, collectivist, humanist society.”

Make no mistake. The Education Establishment, or perhaps we should say the Illiteracy Establishment, has tormented and abused the children of this country for 80 years. These phony experts should not be forgiven.

Bruce Deitrick Price explains educational theories and methods on his site Improve-Education.org.

Reprinted with permission from the American Thinker: http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2015/01/whatever_happened_to_phonics.html

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DECEMBER 2014

COMMON CORE: JUST STANDARDS OR DECEIT?
By Mary Anne Marcella, November 20, 2014

There are many things that concern this parent and teacher involving the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), the least of which is the actual standards themselves. My work as a teacher exposes me directly to what seem to be underhanded acts of educational tyranny. My friends, family, and co-workers, preoccupied just trying to get their children and students prepared for the “rigorous” set of Common Core Standards, don’t notice the red flags. While they are focused on how to achieve success with Common Core, I am losing sleep over what I see and what I fear may be the endgame.

Today, the testing of CCSS is being used to ultimately transfer local control, in violation of the Tenth Amendment, to the federal government. With that transfer comes the possibility that this power in the hands of the federal government could be used for worrisome purposes. Would the federal government use this power to mold the minds of children by defining moral values? Would they attempt to influence the beliefs of the citizenry through messages hidden in texts? Would they push and try to normalize a leftist agenda that contradicts the beliefs of most Americans? Would they use data to track our children through adulthood using hundreds of data points? Would they keep a watchful eye on children across America, via I-pads and other devices, and know who to re-educate? Would they divide students who are willing and able to comply from those who will not accept their worldview? Would they indoctrinate for the common good of a centralized controlled government? Would America become a nation, not of achievers and innovators, but of mediocre workers to be utilized for the collective good of the state?

Evidence is showing that much of this is already happening. For example, teachers across America are forced to use Common Core compliant materials (textbooks, modules, performance assessments, et al) via an evaluation system that punishes them if they don’t comply. (See, American Thinker, October 3, 2014, “Common Core Teacher Evaluations: Ensuring Conformity in Every Classroom"). The “Common Core compliant” materials are sought by teachers, school districts, and parents because they trust that using them will ensure that their children perform well on the “rigorous” Common Core assessments. One thread woven through these “common core compliant” materials is moral relativism. My fifth-grade class read a book called Sounder. This book has been around many years, but it illustrates just how simple it is to train children to think a certain way. The book tells the story of a poor black sharecropper, and presumably takes place in the south in the 1940s. The man loves his wife and children. He is extremely poor. He is terribly exhausted. He works gruelingly hard, but he just can’t get anywhere. He hunts every day with the family dog but food is still difficult to come by. It’s easy to empathize with the character, a man who is doing the right thing and getting nothing for it. One day he comes home with a ham. His wife is worried because she knows he didn’t buy it. Despite this, the family enjoys the ham for days. Even the dog gets scraps. Eventually, the police come and arrest him for stealing the ham. Suffice to say, the punishment is severe. The dog is even shot by the ruthless (white) police. I won’t give away any more of the book. After reading this story, children who agreed that stealing is wrong under absolutely any circumstances, now are not so sure. Maybe it is okay to steal to feed your family. Then, after reading the book, the children may be asked to write an opinion essay in which they address, “Under what circumstances is it okay to steal?” The premise being that stealing can be justified. In addition to the textbooks themselves, you can find examples like this hidden within Common Core compliant math word problems, quizzes, assessments and even sentences. (For example, place the proper punctuation on this sentence: “Government gives us our rights”.) Throughout these Common Core materials are messages that normalize things, in small impressionable brains, that may be contrary to your worldview. Throughout these Common Core materials are values that are being taught that parents might protest if they were made clearer. Parents, are you okay with this?

There are more tentacles to Common Core, and admittedly, some of the standards seem benign. (For example, “Students will understand how characters react to challenges in the story.”) However, the purpose of Common Core is not revealed in the standards. It is revealed in the view that there are no absolute truths or values. It is revealed in the teaching of “higher order thinking” which is attained when a child no longer believes in right and wrong. It is revealed in the view that all that is new is better than what comes from previous generations of knowledge, and much more. Common Core is not just a set of standards. That we very well may have been deceived and that we fell for it with such unflinching obedience, and that there is the potential for total control in the hands of a few who may or may not exploit it, is what keeps this teacher and parent up at night.

Mary Anne Marcella received a B.A from New York University and an M.S in Elementary Education from Lehman College. She lives with her family in New Canaan, CT. She is a parent and public school teacher who cares about her children and her students. Her views are her own and do not necessarily reflect the views of others in the education field. You may contact her maryannem@optonline.net or twitter Maryanne@maryannemercog

Reprinted by permission from the American Thinker: http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2014/11/common_core_just_standards_or_deceit.html

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MARCH 2013

HHS: $8 BILLION PRE-K PROGRAM TOUTED BY OBAMA ISN'T WORKING
February 22, 2013, The Judicial Watch Blog http://www.judicialwatch.org

President Obama loves to tout the success of a multi-billion-dollar early education program that supposedly helps reduce poverty, yet a government study reveals that it really doesn’t work.

Obama keeps pushing the federally-funded universal preschool program known as Head Start even though his own Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has determined that it’s ineffective. Remember how he cited “study after study” showing that the government’s investment in universal preschool pays for itself during the State of Union earlier this month?

It turns out that one of those studies, published last fall by his own HHS, reveals that Head Start isn’t working despite its whopping $8 billion a year price tag. In fact, children who participated in Head Start did worse in math and had problems with social interactions by third grade than those who didn’t go through the federal program.

“There were initial positive impacts from having access to Head Start, but by the end of 3rd grade there were very few impacts….in any of the four domains of cognitive, social-emotional, health and parenting practices,” according to the HHS study. “The few impacts that were found did not show a clear pattern of favorable or unfavorable impacts for children.”

Yet the president is committed to the program and will keep pouring more money into it. His White House education web site explains that Head Start “helps prevent achievement gaps before they start” because the program will provide children from disadvantaged backgrounds with a strong start and a foundation for school success. “Expanding access to high quality early childhood education is among the smartest investments that we can make,” according to the White House site.

Public education— from kindergarten through 12th grade—has long been available for free in the U.S., but parents must pay to send their children to preschool. This creates a disadvantage for those who can’t afford it, according to the Obama administration. So the government must step in with the federally-funded Head Start.

The goal is to “boost the school readiness of low-income children.” The program is based on the “whole child” model and also provides “comprehensive services” such as medical, dental, mental health care and nutritional services designed around a family’s ethnic, cultural and linguistic heritage. Thank you Uncle Sam!

Permission is granted by Judicial Watch to reprint its materials as long as credit is given.

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MAY 2009

THE UNIVERSAL PRE-K SCAM

In a column on Townhall.com on April 08, 2009, John Stossel exposed the foolishness of a government-run universal pre-kindergarten program.  He interviewed a woman who runs 6 preschools and whose reaction to the proposal is: "This whole thing is a scam."

She doesn't want to have to answer to the government because her programs are so far superior and parents choose to send their children her way.  Since public schools, in many cases, aren't doing their jobs and still get to keep their doors open there is no reason to think that pre-K would be different.  Most American kids already attend preschool.  Parents pay for it themselves, and those who can't afford it can get government subsidies or use free programs like Head Start.  Under universal pre-K, taxpayers would pay for every child.

Lots of studies show that any positive effect of preschool vanishes by grades 3 or 4.  Some studies have found that too much school may lead to disruptive and aggressive behavior.  These programs were put in place 10 years ago in Oklahoma and Georgia and have not worked to improve the students results.  Oklahoma's students lost ground to kids from other states.

The supporters then say it helps the kids socially.  How much do you want to pay for that?

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JULY 2003

TEACHER'S PAY

In Education Next, a school-reform journal journal published by The Hoover Institution, a recent study questions the conventional view that public school teachers are woefully underpaid.

According to USA Today, commenting on the study on June 2, 2003, in the 2000-01 school year, the average teacher made $43,250 according to the American Federation of Teachers (AFT).  By comparison, midlevel accountants earned an average of $52,664.  

In The Journal Times, May 30, 2003, the study was further analyzed.

Relying on data from the National Compensation Survey of the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which computes hourly earning for workers, teachers earn more per hour than architects, civil engineers, mechanical engineers, registered nurses and reporters.

Elementary school teachers earned $28.79 an hour, secondary school teachers earned $29.79 an hour and special education teachers earned $29.97 an hour.  In comparison, architects earned $23.22 an hour; editors and reporters, $24.81 an hour; civil engineers, $27.35 an hour.

According to the latest salary information from the AFT, in a press release dated July 16, 2002, Michigan pays well.

When comparing salaries with the national average of $43,250, the AFT report stated:

States with the highest average salary: Connecticut had the highest average salary at $53,507. The other top five states were California, at $52,480; New Jersey, at $51,955; New York, at $51,020; and Michigan, at $50,515. California teacher salaries spiked 10.1 percent, improving its rank from seventh to second. California’s increase reflects state efforts to reduce class size and hire more teachers.

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MAY 2003

  WHAT'S A "PIRG?"

An article in Tech Central Station, March 3, 2003, answers that question.

A student in a Missouri Community College noted that each semester on her tuition bill an item was listed as MOPIRG.  The fine print below said: "If you opt not to support MOPIRG, please deduct this amount from your payment."  However, the tuition bill gave no explanation of what exactly MOPIRG was.

The same situation was found around the country. PennPIRG, MASSPIRG, CALPIRG -- students in Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Colorado and California had been paying small fees to all of these groups, and almost none of the students knew at first what it was they were paying for.  Almost all students are donating to a PIRG.

And Ralph Nader would like to thank you for your support.

The same man who rails against corporate welfare has set up this underhanded, manipulative method of coercing money from college kids and funneling it to Ralph Nader.

The PIRG scam is short for "Public Interest Research Group," and there are well over a hundred chapters across the country.  The scams vary from campus to campus, but basically it works like this:

Each time your kid registers for classes, the local PIRG chapter has arranged with the school to tack a fee on the his tuition.  On most every campus, the PIRG chapter has made attempts to make this "contribution" as secretive and misleading as possible.  Just how secretive and manipulative the method depends on how much resistance each chapter has met in trying to get the scheme implemented.  At most schools, they first attempt to make the fee both mandatory and nonrefundable.  If that doesn't work, they lobby for as underhanded and sneaky a scheme as the school will allow.

This has been going on for 25 years.

If a student attempts to avoid the charge, signs up and then tries to "unsign," it can be very difficult to do.  In some schools, it is not possible, because the charge is mandatory.

The money is not necessarily spent on the campus where it is collected.  This is particularly true in the Northeast, where most, if not all, goes directly to the state PIRG, where it's used to pay political lawyers and statehouse lobbyists, or is used as "seed money" for further fundraising efforts.  About 10% of campus-collected money goes to the national chapter, USPIRG.

While it is always difficult to obtain financial information on Nader's organizations, it is estimated that PIRG chapters manage to collect between $10 and $20 million.

These funds are used to finance a variety of Nader causes, left-wing, anti-capitalist, Green party positions.

If you have a student in college, you should check to see if a PIRG charge appears on the tuition bill.  If so, and you do not wish to support Nader, see if your student can avoid paying it.  Some campuses have been convinced to change their policies when awareness occurred and pressure was applied.

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APRIL 2003

POLITICAL CORRECTNESS GONE NUTS

The Sun Online reported on March 4, 2003 on the madness which overtook the English school of Park Road Junior Infant and Nursery in Batley, West Yorks.

All words relating to pigs have been removed from the school, including the stories of the Three Little Pigs, Babe and all others which refer to pigs.  The school insists that any talk of pigs is offensive to Muslims who make up 60% of the 250 pupils.

Leading Muslims disagreed saying there is nothing in their religious rules to stop children READING about pigs.  A fuming parent said: "I've never heard of anything so ridiculous.  It is absurd."

A member of the Muslim Council of Britain said: "This is bizarre -- there is nothing to stop children reading about pigs.  The ban is simply on the consumption of pork and pig products."

Another religious leader added: "It is rather sad.  Muslims would not find the Three Little Pigs offensive."

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JANUARY 2001

   

1999 IOSCO COUNTY SCHOOL STATISTICS

These tables are based on the 1999 edition of the Michigan School Report compiled by the Michigan Department of Education. The information is supplied by the schools, and, except for the MEAP scores, is subject to revision by the school personnel.  The Jan. 1999 High School Test Results are based on revised tests.  The range of the number of students taking the test is noted, however, the number of 11th graders for each school district is not. The students who excelled, met Michigan standards and met basic standards were combined for each subject.

HIGH SCHOOL DATA (Except as Noted)

School District: ............Hale............Tawas...............Oscoda...........W-P

School Enrollment -- State Average 484
1999............................252..............577.....................658.............387
1998.............................421..............550.....................601.............402
1997.............................387..............570.....................576.............242
1996.............................389..............517.....................581.............233
1995.............................381..............511.....................547.............238

Pupils per teacher -- Michigan: 22.1 -- U.S.: 17
1999.............................19.6.............27.5......................22.1...........19.2
1998.............................19.6.............26.2.....................23.6...........22.4
1997.............................18.0.............27.1.....................N/A............22.4
1996..............................17.7.............26.5.....................25.0...........21.0
1995..............................18.1.............24.2.....................23.6...........22.7

Current Operating expenditure per pupil* --  State $4362
1998............................$4634...........$4149................$4233..........$5221
1997............................$6600...........$4229................$4286...........$5077
1996............................$4380...........$3855................$4281.........$3606
1995............................$4155...........$4066................$4698.........$3393
*Not necessarily comparable to 1997 and prior years

Average teacher annual salary -- does not include benefits --State --$47,693
1999.........................$41,723..........$41,044..............$47,194.......$40,583
1997...........................$41,706*.......$42,015..............$52,499.......$41,127
1996...........................$37,119.........$43,447..............$48,221.......$29,722
1995...........................$36,637.........$45,013..............$54,060.......$32,016
* District wide data, did not report by school

MEAP/HSPT Scores* -- Jan. 1998 Results -- Per Cent Basic or Better...................Michigan
11th Grade Science...........47.4...............59.2...................61.7..............44.5...............51.7
11th Grade Math..............42.1...............74.0...................56.1..............52.3...............60.5
11th Grade Reading.........53.9...............64.4...................66.7..............36.8...............58.9
11th Grade Writing...........46.2...............58.4...................46.4..............26.9...............56.6
*Not comparable to 1997 and prior years

JUNIOR HIGH SCHOOL DATA (Except as Noted)

School District: ............Hale............Tawas...............Oscoda...........W-P

School Enrollment -- N/A=Not Available -- State -- 484
1999.............................268..............327.....................421............237
1998.............................421..............349.....................417.............237
1997.............................387..............311.....................373.............242
1996.............................389..............297.....................N/A.............233
1995.............................381..............296.....................N/A.............238
Junior High data except for Hale Middle School

Pupils per teacher -- Michigan: 22.1 -- U.S.: 17
1999..............................22.3.............22.0...................22.2.............22.6
1998..............................19.6.............24.8...................23.8.............22.6
1997..............................18.0.............23.6...................22.5.............22.4
1996..............................17.7.............23.4....................N/A.............21.0
1995..............................18.1.............23.4....................N/A.............22.7

Average expenditure per pupil -- N/A=Not Available -- State --$4362
1998.............................N/A...............$3381................$3961........$3381
1997.............................N/A...............$3428................$3944........$3284
1996............................$4380.............$3450..................N/A.........$3606
1995............................$4155.............$3705..................N/A.........$3393

Average teacher annual salary -- does not include benefits -- State -- $ 47,693
1997................................N/A...........$43,492..............$48,791.......$33,129
1997................................N/A...........$42,794..............$45,088.......$28,169
1996...........................$37,119..........$43,600................N/A...........$29,722
1995...........................$36,637..........$44,506................N/A...........$32,016

MEAP/HSPT Scores -- 1999 Results -- Per Cent Proficient....................................Michigan
8th Grade Science...........26.3...............25.6...................19.3..............31.8...............23.0
7th Grade Math..............61.2...............83.9...................65.1..............37.5...............63.2
7th Grade Reading.........61.2...............61.7...................47.0..............42.3..............53.0
8th Grade Writing..........55.4...............72.0...................61.9..............67.3..............63.5

ELEMENTARY  SCHOOL DATA (Except as Noted)

Elementary School data is maintained by school. Because of the number of schools involved, the following are the 1998-1999 school results, since these are the most complete recent statistics. N/A=Not Available.

School........Enroll-........pupils/.......expense/...teacher salary.............MEAP Results--% Proficient
.......................ment........teacher.......pupil*.........average**...4th Math...4th Read...5th Sci...5th Writ

Hale..............320............2402..........4,041.........46,390............65.1............47.6..........19.6............54.8

Tawas El......382.............22.5...........3,798..........43,387...........79.8............N/A..........45.1...........21.8

C. Bolen......541.............24.2............3,533..........43,236...........N/A.............N/A...........N/A...........N/A

Tawas Area...............................................................................79.8.............70.6...........45.1...........21.8

Cedar Lk....438...............22.5............4,519..........48,315..........N/A..............N/A..........N/A...........N/A

Glennie.........120............24.0............4,191..........41,100..........33.3..............28.6..........18.2...........72.7

Oscoda Area..............................................................................55.4...............45.1.........23.8..........32.1

W-P.............696...............21.8............7,350..........95,463..........39.4...............36.2.........17.8..........31.0

Michigan......484...............22.1............4,362..........47,693.........71.7.............59.4..........37.5..........54.8

*1997-98 data, 1998-9 N/A. .....**This salary (and the state average) do not include benefits.
........................State average benefits for 1995 were 12,179.
....................................This data was N/A for the local schools and districts.

District Data per student --1998-99

District............................Hale...........Tawas..............Oscoda...........W-P..........State
K-12 Enrollment.............840............1815...................2287............1504.............2469
Pupil/Teacher Ratio......21.3.............23.4......................21.7.............21.1...........21.3
Total Revenue (97-98)..$6561...........$6044................$6705.........$6452.........$7372
Foundation Allowance...$5535...........$5212................$5360.........$5170........$6065
Current Spending..........$6121...........$5178................$6258.........$5592........$6551
Av. Teacher Salary (98)..43641........42691..............46342...........41059........47345
Dropout Rate (97-98)......10.9..............1.8....................5.6...............8.6............4.6...
Graduation Rate (98)......63.8.............93.4...................80.8............71.5...........82.8..

Last Census Median Household Income -- Michigan: $31,020 -- U.S.: $30,056
...................................$16,527........$21,325..............$20,141......$14,325

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AUGUST 2000

MICHIGAN TEACHERS ARE WELL PAID

The American Federation of Teachers (AFT) has produced a table comparing teachers' salaries across the country using the 1997-1998 school year, the latest year available.

Using the AFT estimate of an average salary of $48,361, Michigan came in fourth, behind Connecticut at $51,727, New Jersey at $50,284 and New York at $48,712.  The average country wide was  approximately $39,350.  (The entire table can be seen at www.aft.org .)

The State of Michigan reported the average reported annual teacher salary (not including benefits) as $47,359.  Corresponding 1998 school year as: Hale -- $43,648, Tawas -- $42,691, Oscoda -- $46,342 and W-P -- $41,059.

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JULY 2000

HAVE WE BEEN DUMBED DOWN?


 Could You Have Passed the 8th Grade in 1895? Take a Look:

 This is the eighth-grade final exam from 1895 from Salina, Kansas. It was taken from the original document on file at the Smoky Valley Genealogical Society and Library in Salina, Kansas and reprinted by the Salina Journal.

 8th Grade Final Exam: Salina, Kansas - 1895

 Grammar  (Time, one hour)
 1. Give nine rules for the use of Capital Letters.
 2. Name the Parts of Speech and define those that have no modifications.
 3. Define Verse, Stanza and Paragraph.
 4. What are the Principal Parts of a verb? Give Principal Parts of do, lie, lay and run.
 5. Define Case, Illustrate each Case.
 6. What is Punctuation? Give rules for principal marks of Punctuation.
 7-10. Write a composition of about 150 words and show therein that you understand the practical use of the rules of grammar.

 Arithmetic (Time, 1.25 hours)
 1. Name and define the Fundamental Rules of Arithmetic.
 2. A wagon box is 2 ft. deep, 10 feet long, and 3 ft. wide. How many bushels of wheat will it hold?
 3. If a load of wheat weighs 3942 lbs., what is it worth at 50 cts. Per bu, deducting 1050 lbs. For tare?
 4. District No. 33 has a valuation of $35,000. What is the necessary levy to carry on a school seven months at $50 per month, and have $104 for incidentals?
 5. Find cost of 6720 lbs. coal at $6.00 per ton.
 6. Find the interest of $512.60 for 8 months and 18 days at 7 percent.
 7. What is the cost of 40 boards 12 inches wide and 16 ft. long at $.20 per inch?
 8. Find bank discount on $300 for 90 days (no grace) at 10 percent.
 9. What is the cost of a square farm at $15 per acre, the distance around which is 640 rods?
 10. Write a Bank Check, a Promissory Note, and a Receipt.

 U.S. History  (Time, 45 minutes)
 1. Give the epochs into which U.S. History is divided.
 2. Give an account of the discovery of America by Columbus.
 3. Relate the causes and results of the Revolutionary War.
 4. Show the territorial growth of the United States.
 5. Tell what you can of the history of Kansas.
 6. Describe three of the most prominent battles of the Rebellion.
 7. Who were the following: Morse, Whitney, Fulton, Bell, Lincoln, Penn, and Howe?
 8. Name events connected with the following dates: 1607, 1620, 1800, 1849, and 1865?

 Orthography (Time, one hour)
 1. What is meant by the following: Alphabet, phonetic orthography, etymology, syllabication?
 2. What are elementary sounds? How classified?
 3. What are the following, and give examples of each: Trigraph, subvocals, diphthong, cognate letters, linguals?
 4. Give four substitutes for caret 'u'.
 5. Give two rules for spelling words with final 'e'.  Name two exceptions under each rule.
 6. Give two uses of silent letters in spelling.   Illustrate each.
 7. Define the following prefixes and use in connection with a word: Bi, dis, mis, pre, semi, post, non, inter, mono, super.
 8. Mark diacritically and divide into syllables the following, and name the sign that indicates the sound: Card, ball, mercy, sir, odd, cell, rise, blood, fare, last.
 9. Use the following correctly in sentences, Cite, site, sight, fane, fain, feign, vane, vain, vein, raze, raise, rays.
 10. Write 10 words frequently mispronounced and indicate pronunciation by use of diacritical marks and by syllabication.

Geography  (Time, one hour)
 1. What is climate? Upon what does climate depend?
 2. How do you account for the extremes of climate in Kansas?
 3. Of what use are rivers? Of what use is the ocean?
 4. Describe the mountains of N.A.
 5. Name and describe the following: Monrovia, Odessa, Denver, Manitoba, Hecla, Yukon, St. Helena, Juan Fermandez, Aspinwall and Orinoco.
 6. Name and locate the principal trade centers of the U.S.
 7. Name all the republics of Europe and give capital of each.
 8. Why is the Atlantic Coast colder than the Pacific in the same latitude?
 9. Describe the process by which the water of the ocean returns to the sources of rivers.
 10. Describe the movements of the earth. Give inclination of the earth.

 Imagine a college student who went to public school trying to pass this test, even if the few outdated questions were modernized. Imagine their professors even being able to Pass the 8th Grade. Can Americans, student and professor alike, get  back up to the 8th Grade level of 1895?
  

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JUNE 2000

YOUR UNIVERSITY AT WORK

The State News reported on March 28, 2000 on a protest launched by Michigan's American Family Association against a new English course being added to the University of Michigan's fall schedule.  

The course, "How to be Gay: Male Homosexuality and Initiation" is being offered by a homosexual professor, David Halperin.  He says he doesn't understand where all the fuss is coming from.  "I know that they haven't attempted to contact me for information on the course. . . . I don't think they're interested in getting information.  They just want to mobilize opposition.  They have no idea what I'm teaching, because I don't know quite what it will be yet."

The course has already passed a review process by U of M's English department.  There are no plans for its removal, said Joel Seguine, a university spokesman.  "We are in complete support both of Professor Halperin's course and of his freedom to teach the course he has constructed," said Nancy Cantor, provost and vice president for academic affairs, in a prepared statement.

Thought you'd like to know so you can make an informed decision when the "Dear Alumnus" letter comes. . . .

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JANUARY 2000

YOUR GOVERNMENT DOLLARS AT WORK

The smallest Cabinet department, with 4800 employees, Education has 167 appointees -- one to every 29 workers.  The Los Angeles Times reported on October 3, 1999 that the Department of Education has become a haven for Clinton loyalists.  For example, when Carol Moseley-Braun lost her US Senate seat, she signed on as a consultant at $435.84 a day and received $23,145.84 from January through June, 1999.  Her contract calls for her to "develop outreach plans and initiatives to convey information on the need for school reconstruction to communities, officials of state and local government, parents, business and school administrators."  (She is awaiting confirmation as Ambassador to New Zealand.)

When Carol Rasco wanted to leave her post as White House domestic advisor, she was given a $125,000 job running a skeletal reading program that Congress has refused to fund.  Other appointees include a former Stanford University education dean, a onetime suburban New York school superintendent, the president's goddaughter, the Transportation secretary's sister-in-law and myriad Clinton-Gore campaign veterans.

The inspector general has warned that the department lacked employees with critical computer and financial skills and that it needed people with expertise to oversee outside contractors.  These positions are not filled because of the political appointees.  The Department of Education budget has risen to approximately $33.5 billion per year.

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JANUARY 2000

   

1999 IOSCO COUNTY SCHOOL STATISTICS

These tables are based on the 1999 edition of the Michigan School Report compiled by the Michigan Department of Education. The information is supplied by the schools, and, except for the MEAP scores, is subject to revision by the school personnel.  The Jan. 1999 High School Test Results are based on revised tests.  The range of the number of students taking the test is noted, however, the number of 11th graders for each school district is not. The students who excelled, met Michigan standards and met basic standards were combined for each subject.

HIGH SCHOOL DATA (Except as Noted)

School District: ............Hale............Tawas...............Oscoda...........W-P

School Enrollment -- State Average 489
1999*...........................266..............619.....................690.............388
1998*...........................252..............576.....................**...............***
1998.............................421..............550.....................601.............402
1997.............................387..............570.....................576.............242
1996.............................389..............517.....................581.............233
1995.............................381..............511.....................547.............238
* Figures from the Iosco County News-Herald, Oct. 6, 1999.  These are
"raw data".  The figures used by the State blend September and Feb-
ruary.  The 1998 figures used by the State are on the line below.
** Oscoda reported only a total for 1998 of 2265 students compared to
2224 for 1999.  The State count total for 1998 was not available.
Oscoda  reported 43 students in alternative education of HS age.
*** Whittemore-Prescott reported only a total for 1998 of 1498 students
compared to 1458 for 1999. The State count for 1998 was 979. Whit-
temore-Prescott also reported 79 students in alternative education.

Pupils per teacher -- Michigan: 21^ -- U.S.: 17
1999^...........................21................23........................21................23
1998.............................19.6.............26.2.....................23.6...........22.4
1997.............................18.0.............27.1.....................N/A............22.4
1996..............................17.7.............26.5.....................25.0...........21.0
1995..............................18.1.............24.2.....................23.6...........22.7
^...These are District-wide figures, not broken down by grade level

Average expenditure per pupil -- N/A=Not Available -- State $6066
1998............................$6337...........$5431................$6560..........$6058
1997............................$6600...........$4229................$4286...........$5077
1996............................$4380...........$3855................$4281.........$3606
1995............................$4155...........$4066................$4698.........$3393

Average teacher annual salary -- does not include benefits --State --$47,359
1998*........................$43,648..........$42,691..............$46,342.......$41,059
1997...........................$41,706*.......$42,015..............$52,499.......$41,127
1996...........................$37,119.........$43,447..............$48,221.......$29,722
1995...........................$36,637.........$45,013..............$54,060.......$32,016
* District wide data, did not report by school

MEAP/HSPT Scores -- Jan. 1999 Results -- Per Cent Basic or Better...................Michigan
11th Grade Science...........85.1...............81.5...................91.6..............72.2...............80.3
11th Grade Math..............71.1...............86.0...................86.1..............81.5...............81.1
11th Grade Reading.........71.1...............79.5...................89.1..............72.4...............81.9
11th Grade Writing...........89.1...............86.0...................91.5..............56.2...............85.3
# Taking Test....................46-47..............92-93.............142-151...........76-82...78,478-81,717

JUNIOR HIGH SCHOOL DATA (Except as Noted)

School District: ............Hale............Tawas...............Oscoda...........W-P

School Enrollment -- N/A=Not Available -- State -- 489
1998.............................421..............349.....................417.............237
1997.............................387..............311.....................373.............242
1996.............................389..............297.....................N/A.............233
1995.............................381..............296.....................N/A.............238

Pupils per teacher -- Michigan: 22.9 -- U.S.: 17
1998..............................19.6.............24.8...................23.8.............22.6
1997..............................18.0.............23.6...................22.5.............22.4
1996..............................17.7.............23.4....................N/A.............21.0
1995..............................18.1.............23.4....................N/A.............22.7

Average expenditure per pupil -- N/A=Not Available -- State --$4227
1997.............................N/A...............$3428................$3944........$3284
1996............................$4380.............$3450..................N/A.........$3606
1995............................$4155.............$3705..................N/A.........$3393

Average teacher annual salary -- does not include benefits -- State -- $ 47,120
1997................................N/A...........$42,794..............$45,088.......$28,169
1996...........................$37,119..........$43,600................N/A...........$29,722
1995...........................$36,637..........$44,506................N/A...........$32,016

MEAP/HSPT Scores -- 1998-99 Results -- Per Cent Proficient....................................Michigan
8th Grade Science...........26.3...............25.6...................19.3..............31.8...............22.0
7th Grade Math..............61.2...............83.9...................65.1..............37.5...............61.4
7th Grade Reading.........61.2...............61.7...................47.0..............42.3..............48.8
8th Grade Writing..........55.4...............72.0...................61.9..............67.3..............69.0

ELEMENTARY  SCHOOL DATA (Except as Noted)

Elementary School data is maintained by school. Because of the number of schools involved, the following are the 1998-1999 school results, since these are the most complete recent statistics. N/A=Not Available.

School........Enroll-........pupils/.......expense/...teacher salary.............MEAP Results--% Proficient
.......................ment........teacher.......pupil*.........average**...4th Math...4th Read...5th Sci...5th Writ

Hale..............400............26.7............N/A..............N/A.............65.1............47.6..........19.6............54.9

Tawas El......411.............24.2...........3,421..........42,608............N/A............N/A...........N/A............N/A

C. Bolen......520.............24.8............3,448..........42,560...........N/A.............N/A...........N/A...........N/A

Tawas Area...............................................................................79.8.............70.6...........45.1...........21.8

Cedar Lk....470...............26.1............4,078..........48,825..........N/A..............N/A..........N/A...........N/A

Glennie.....................................................................................33.3..............28.6..........18.2...........72.7

Richardson................................................................................58.4...............47.4.........24.2..........29.1

Oscoda Area..............................................................................55.4...............45.1.........23.8..........32.1

W-P.............340...............26.2............3,577..........40,814..........39.4...............36.2.........17.8..........31.0

Michigan............................................6,507...........47,009.........74.1...............58.6..........40.4.........64.3

*1996-7 data, 1997-8 N/A. .....**This salary (and the state average) do not include benefits.
........................State average benefits for 1995 were 12,179.
....................................This data was N/A for the local schools and districts.

District Data per student --1996-97

District............................Hale...........Tawas..............Oscoda...........W-P..........State
Total Revenue..............$6433...........$5527................$6226.........$6120.........$7050
Foundation Allowance...$5381...........$4921................$5097.........$4843........$5878
Current Spending..........$6411...........$5074................$6119.........$5459........$6507
Dropout Rate..................4.3................0.7.....................5.1...............1.5...........6.6....
Graduation Rate............85.9...............96.8...................83.5..............93.9.........76.2..

Median Household Income -- Michigan: $31,020 -- U.S.: $30,056
...................................$16,527........$21,325..............$20,141......$14,325

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JUNE 1999

THE CLASS-SIZE MYTH

In the March 13, 1999 Savannah Morning News, the editorial brought forth some interesting statistics in the wake of the Senate's passing of the $15 billion education bill which allows the states to use the money for programs which serve them best. Clinton has threatened to veto the bill because it doesn't include the required 100,000 teachers program.

The editorial points out that class sizes have been falling for more than 30 years. The average was 24.1 in 1965 and 17.3 in 1990. No corresponding increase in student achievement has been noted. In Kansas City, Missouri, a court-ordered desegregation plan that spent $2 billion in 12 years reduced class size to 12 or 13 students per teacher -- the lowest in America. Student performance didn't improve.

A 1987 New Jersey study concluded that "pupil-teacher ratios or class sizes are among the weakest effects on learning, except at class sizes below about five to 10, which amount to tutoring groups." A mid-1980's experiment in Tennessee put kindergartners in classes of 13 to 17 (rather than the usual 21 to 25) and found that the kids in the smaller classes did a little better than the ones in the larger rooms in kindergarten only. No continuing disparity in achievement was found in the later grades.

Mr. Clinton's plan seems more designed to increase the numbers of members of the teachers' unions, reliable supporters of the Democrat cause and designed to appeal to the soccer moms who believe the myth about class size. The real effect is to paper over the real problem, the quality of the teacher who is at the head of the class.

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APRIL 1999

NO CHOICE FOR GORE

Vice President Al Gore has been a loyal backer of President Clinton's education programs -- from opposing school vouchers to making plans that would link every school to the Internet.

Michael Chapman opined on 2/17/99 in Investor's Business Daily that Gore's goal might well push an extreme environmental agenda which would shunt facts and sound science aside and instead look for crises that demand "solutions," including higher taxes and more regulations.

He noted that in joining most of the Democratic Party establishment in opposing school vouchers Gore has called them "wrong-headed" and said they "would drain precious resources from our public schools, and would barely benefit the students who need help the most."

Gore and his wife, Tipper, went to private prep schools and graduated from private colleges. Two of their children go to private schools, as did two tohers who are now in elite private colleges.

"Al Gore carries on (Clinton's) hypocrisy," said William "Chip" Mellore, president of the Institute for Justice, a Washington, D.C.-based law firm that defends voucher plans in court. "He refuses to make it possible for others to have the choice that he believes is essential for his own children's well-being -- the chance for a decent education."

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DECEMBER 1998

1998 IOSCO COUNTY SCHOOL STATISTICS

These tables are based on the 1998 edition of the Michigan School Report compiled by the Michigan Department of Education. The information is supplied by the schools, and, except for the MEAP scores, is subject to revision by the school personnel.

HIGH SCHOOL DATA (Except as Noted)

School District: ............Hale............Tawas...............Oscoda...........W-P

School Enrollment -- State Average 489
1998.............................421..............550.....................601.............402
1997.............................387..............570.....................576.............242
1996.............................389..............517.....................581.............233
1995.............................381..............511.....................547.............238

Pupils per teacher -- Michigan: 22.9 -- U.S.: 17
1998.............................19.6.............26.2.....................23.6...........22.4
1997.............................18.0.............27.1.....................N/A............22.4
1996..............................17.7.............26.5.....................25.0...........21.0
1995..............................18.1.............24.2.....................23.6...........22.7

Average expenditure per pupil -- N/A=Not Available -- State $4227
1998.............................N/A................N/A....................N/A.............N/A
1997.............................N/A..............$4229................$4286.........$5077
1996............................$4380...........$3855................$4281.........$3606
1995............................$4155...........$4066................$4698.........$3393

Average teacher annual salary -- does not include benefits --State --$47,120
1998..............................N/A................N/A....................N/A..............N/A
1997...........................$41,706*.......$42,015..............$52,499.......$41,127
1996...........................$37,119........$43,447..............$48,221.......$29,722
1995...........................$36,637........$45,013..............$54,060......$32,016
* District wide data, did not report by school

MEAP/HSPT Scores -- 1996-97 Results -- Per Cent Proficient....................................Michigan
11th Grade Science...........22.2...............51.3...................32.7..............33.3...............38.5
11th Grade Math..............28.6...............66.7...................20.7..............25.3...............52.9
11th Grade Reading.........13.9...............44.3...................30.5..............25.4...............41.1
11th Grade Writing...........16.7...............22.4...................21.0..............15.5...............30.3

JUNIOR HIGH SCHOOL DATA (Except as Noted)

Hale reports Secondary school data and does not separate out high school and junior high school enrollment, pupils per teacher, average expenditure and average teacher salaries.

School District: ............Hale............Tawas...............Oscoda...........W-P

School Enrollment -- N/A=Not Available -- State -- 489
1998.............................421..............349.....................417.............237
1997.............................387..............311.....................373.............242
1996.............................389..............297.....................N/A.............233
1995.............................381..............296.....................N/A.............238

Pupils per teacher -- Michigan: 22.9 -- U.S.: 17
1998..............................19.6.............24.8...................23.8.............22.6
1997..............................18.0.............23.6...................22.5.............22.4
1996..............................17.7.............23.4....................N/A.............21.0
1995..............................18.1.............23.4....................N/A.............22.7

Average expenditure per pupil -- N/A=Not Available -- State --$4227
1997.............................N/A...............$3428................$3944........$3284
1996............................$4380.............$3450..................N/A.........$3606
1995............................$4155.............$3705..................N/A.........$3393

Average teacher annual salary -- does not include benefits -- State -- $ 47,120
1997................................N/A...........$42,794..............$45,088.......$28,169
1996...........................$37,119..........$43,600................N/A...........$29,722
1995...........................$36,637..........$44,506................N/A...........$32,016

MEAP/HSPT Scores -- 1997-98 Results -- Per Cent Proficient....................................Michigan
8th Grade Science...........12.1...............26.4...................14.2..............14.2...............22.0
7th Grade Math..............62.0...............78.5...................73.9..............73.9...............61.4
7th Grade Reading.........58.0...............63.0...................46.1..............46.1..............48.8
8th Grade Writing..........51.7...............65.7...................54.5..............54.5..............69.0

ELEMENTARY  SCHOOL DATA (Except as Noted)

Elementary School data is maintained by school. Because of the number of schools involved, the following are the 1997-1998 school results, since these are the most complete recent statistics. N/A=Not Available.

School........Enroll-........pupils/.......expense/...teacher salary.............MEAP Results--% Proficient
.......................ment........teacher.......pupil*.........average**...4th Math...4th Read...5th Sci...5th Writ

Hale..............400............26.7............N/A..............N/A.............66.0............47.2..........26.8............51.8

Tawas El......411.............24.2...........3,421..........42,608............N/A............N/A...........N/A............N/A

C. Bolen......520.............24.8............3,448..........42,560...........N/A.............N/A...........N/A...........N/A

Tawas Area...............................................................................84.5.............68.9...........41.2...........71.2

Cedar Lk....470...............26.1............4,078..........48,825..........N/A..............N/A..........N/A...........N/A

Oscoda Area..............................................................................66.0...............42.7.........27.4...........57.2

W-P.............340...............26.2............3,577..........40,814..........43.7...............35.3.........28.6..........46.1

Michigan............................................6,507...........47,009.........74.1...............58.6..........40.4.........64.3

*1996-7 data, 1997-8 N/A. .....**This salary (and the state average) do not include benefits.
........................State average benefits for 1995 were 12,179.
....................................This data was N/A for the local schools and districts.

District Data per student --1996-97

District............................Hale...........Tawas..............Oscoda...........W-P..........State
Total Revenue..............$6433...........$5527................$6226.........$6120.........$7050
Foundation Allowance...$5381...........$4921................$5097.........$4843........$5878
Current Spending..........$6411...........$5074................$6119.........$5459........$6507
Dropout Rate..................4.3................0.7.....................5.1...............1.5...........6.6....
Graduation Rate............85.9...............96.8...................83.5..............93.9.........76.2..

Median Household Income -- Michigan: $31,020 -- U.S.: $30,056
...................................$16,527........$21,325..............$20,141......$14,325

1989 per capita Income -- Michigan: $14,154 -- U.S.: $14,420
.....................................$8,114.........$10,756............. $9,382.........$7,304

The Michigan Department of Education Website contains much more information, including data on the grade school performance and statistics. There is additional data on the communities themselves.

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JANUARY - FEBRUARY - MARCH 1998

IOSCO COUNTY SCHOOL STATS

These tables are based on the 1997 edition of the Michigan School Report compiled by the Michigan Department of Education. The information is supplied by the schools, and, except for the MEAP scores, is subject to revision by the school personnel.

HIGH SCHOOL DATA (Except as Noted)

School District: ............Hale............Tawas...............Oscoda...........W-P

School Enrollment
1997.............................387..............570.....................576.............242
1996.............................389..............517.....................581.............233
1995.............................381..............511.....................547.............238

Pupils per teacher -- Michigan: 20 -- U.S.: 17
District wide....................18................16.......................16...............17
1997.............................18.0.............27.1.....................N/A............22.4
1996..............................17.7.............26.5.....................25.0...........21.0
1995..............................18.1.............24.2.....................23.6...........22.7

Average expenditure per pupil -- N/A=Not Available
1997...............................N/A................N/A....................N/A.............N/A
1996............................$4380...........$3855................$4281.........$3606
1995............................$4155...........$4066................$4698.........$3393

Average teacher annual salary -- does not include benefits
1997................................N/A................N/A....................N/A..............N/A
1996...........................$37,119........$43,447..............$48,221......$29,722
1995...........................$36,637........$45,013..............$54,060......$32,016

MEAP/HSPT Scores -- 1996 Results -- Per Cent Proficient....................................Michigan
11th Grade Science...........12.1...............32.3...................33.7..............20.2...............38.5
11th Grade Math..............36.4...............61.5...................40.4..............26.6...............47.7
11th Grade Reading.........42.4...............38.0...................47.6..............22.8...............40.2
11th Grade Writing...........12.1...............38.5...................28.8..............10.9...............34.4

JUNIOR HIGH SCHOOL DATA (Except as Noted)

Hale and Whittemore-Prescott report Secondary school data and do not separate out high school and junior high school enrollment, pupils per teacher, average expenditure and average teacher salaries.

School District: ............Hale............Tawas...............Oscoda...........W-P

School Enrollment -- N/A=Not Available
1997.............................387..............311.....................373.............242
1996.............................389..............297.....................N/A.............233
1995.............................381..............296.....................N/A.............238

Pupils per teacher -- Michigan: 20 -- U.S.: 17
District wide....................18................16......................16................17
1997..............................18.0.............23.6...................22.5.............22.4
1996..............................17.7.............23.4....................N/A.............21.0
1995..............................18.1.............23.4....................N/A.............22.7

Average expenditure per pupil -- N/A=Not Available
1997.............................N/A................N/A....................N/A.............N/A
1996............................$4380.............$3450..................N/A.........$3606
1995............................$4155.............$3705..................N/A.........$3393

Average teacher annual salary -- does not include benefits
1997................................N/A................N/A.................N/A.................N/A
1996...........................$37,119..........$43,600................N/A...........$29,722
1995...........................$36,637..........$44,506................N/A...........$32,016

MEAP/HSPT Scores -- 1996 Results -- Per Cent Proficient....................................Michigan
8th Grade Science...........13.2...............31.9...................33.7..............19.8...............21.5
7th Grade Math..............43.3...............61.8...................40.4..............43.2...............55.0
7th Grade Reading.........56.7...............40.2...................47.6..............27.2...............42.3
8th Grade Writing...........62.3..............72.8....................28.8..............N/A...............69.1

ELEMENTARY  SCHOOL DATA (Except as Noted)

Elementary School data is maintained by school. Because of the number of schools involved, the following will reflect the 1995-1996 school results, since these are the most complete recent statistics. N/A=Not Available.

School........Enroll-........pupils/.......expense/...teacher salary.............MEAP Results--% Proficient
.......................ment........teacher.......pupil..........average**...4th Math...4th Read...5th Sci...5th Writ

Hale..............389............22.9...........3,898..........39,102............55.9............35.6..........25.0............57.0

Tawas El......438.............25.8...........3,370..........42,368............69.2............41.3..........28.1............48.6

C. Bolen......527.............25.1............3,144..........39,909...........N/A.............N/A...........N/A...........N/A

Tawas Area...............................................................................45.7..............48.6..........28.1...........48.6

Cedar Lk....520...............30.6............2,918..........42,604..........N/A..............N/A..........N/A...........N/A

Richardson.689...............48.2............3,688..........80,991...........49.3.............31.0..........15.3...........40.6

River Rd....355...............N/A...............643............N/A.............N/A..............N/A..........N/A...........N/A

Oscoda Area..............................................................................35.0...............29.9.........13.5...........38.2

Prescott.....351................22.6............3,865..........39,369...........N/A...............N/A.........N/A...........N/A

Whittemore325................23.9............3,626..........35,608...........29.3...............27.2.........25.2..........54.5

W-P Area...................................................................................30.6...............32.4..........25.2..........54.5

Michigan..........................................5,361*.........34,663*.........60.5...............49.0..........26.9..........55.6

*1995 data, 1996 N/A. .....**This salary (and the state average) do not include benefits.
........................State average benefits for 1995 were 12,179.
....................................This data was N/A for the local schools and districts.

District Data per student

District............................Hale...........Tawas..............Oscoda...........W-P
Total Revenue..............$3679...........$4045................$3789.........$3413
Local Taxes..................$3156...........$3274................$1758.........$1254
State Revenue.................$108............$100..................$836..........$1761
Federal Revenue.............$222............$147...................$926...........$184
Total Expenditure..........$3773...........$4890................$3995.........$3382
Current Spending..........$3751...........$3493................$3994.........$3163
Instructional Spending...$2223...........$2155................$2259.........$1608
Support Services............$1247...........$1110................$1415...........$871

Median Household Income -- Michigan: $31,020 -- U.S.: $30,056
...................................$16,527........$21,325..............$20,141......$14,325

1989 per capita Income -- Michigan: $14,154 -- U.S.: $14,420
.....................................$8,114.........$10,756............. $9,382.........$7,304

The Michigan Department of Education Website contains much more information, including data on the grade school performance and statistics. There is additional data on the communities themselves.

Return to Index


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