Thursday, January 15, 2009

Poverty And Minority Students Seen As Major Challenges To Some Oklahoma Districts.

Another example of the challenges facing educators who teach kids in poverty. This issue isn't going to go away.

The AP (1/13) reports that "poverty and a growing population of minority students, including non-English speaking Hispanics, are presenting major challenges to public schools in Oklahoma City and Tulsa, a state school official said Monday." According to State Superintendent of Public Instruction Sandy Garrett, in both districts, "more than 80 percent of students in both districts qualify for free or reduced lunches because of their families' low income levels." Garrett joined "Higher Education Chancellor Glen Johnson "to present performance reviews of their systems" to the budget panel. During the presentation, Garrett "stressed her preference for expanding the school year and the school day to improve the education of Oklahoma students." She told the panel that "excessive testing to meet state and federal mandates is leaving little time for teachers to teach, suggesting that some testing chores in some subjects could be handled at the local level."

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