I caught a partial view of HBO's Douglass High Documentary and I have a question.
Was the Documentary supposed to be anti-NCLB or pro-NCLB?
To me it seems pro-NCLB, though that was probably not intentional. I can't see how anyone could view the documentary and come away with the impression that the administrators of Douglass don't need independent oversight. Their idea of education seems to be seat time. If the student is capable of sitting in his seat during class, regardless of what he's learning, he'll be passed along for four years and graduate. What he's actually learned, if anything, is irrelevant.
I think the average person would be horrified at what passes for education at Douglass. It is probably best that they don't know because I think support for the notion of public education would be greatly diminished.
Sixty percent of Douglass' student drop out between ninth and twelfth grade. Granted, most of the student came to Douglass way behind where they should have been, but the performance of the 40% that didn't drop out was appalling. Only a tiny percentage of students tested as proficient in math and reading. These were the good students, with parental support. They all seemed well fed and well dressed (fashion sense notwithstanding). The teachers admitted that nearly none were at grade level, yet miraculously almost every student qualified for graduation in the end.
I don't think this is what the public has in mind when they signed on for public education.