According to “The Nation’s Report Card” Lutheran Schools Tops in the Nation

Great piece by Janie Andrich highlighting how Lutheran Schools are tops in the nation!

Accountability! Results- what difference does it make? We are becoming a data-driven nation in regard to our schools. Whether you agree with that direction or not, it is where we are at this moment in our nation’s history. Parents want to know if their child is receiving a quality education.

The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), also known as “The Nation’ s Report Card,” is the only nationally representative and continuing assessment of what America’s students know and can do in various subject areas.

The report is in and the news is GREAT for Lutheran schools. In five of the eight categories Lutheran Schools finished in first place among nine other categorizations. In the other three we finished second. The groups included the following: public, other religious, nonsectarian, Catholic, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Dept. of Defense, State Department of Education, Lutheran, and Conservative Christian.

Source: Lutheran Schools Tops in the Nation on “The Nation’s Report Card” – Janie Andrich – 21st Century Education.

It is a choice that is made on where to send your children to school.  If you are able to send your child to a Lutheran school that’s awesome!  As Janie points out:

Lutheran  schools  are great places to grow.   Lutheran  schools, like any schools,  are not perfect. In Lutheran schools students learn that they are forgiven and that they also can forgive others because of Jesus Christ. And yes, we do thank God students in Lutheran Schools have great test scores. Lutheran Schools have teachers, parents, administrators, boards and congregations  who continue to strive for excellence in all aspects of Lutheran education, academics. the arts, sports, social development, service to others and creating 21st century learning environments that prepare our students for service.

And if you you aren’t able to that’s great too.  The key in the end is to be involved in your child’s education, so that they do well.


Private Education: Good for Students, Families, America

Private education is good for everyone.  Even more important is families having the ability to CHOOSE private education for their children.

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Voucher, Charter Schools at Risk

All thanks to the No Child Left Behind waiver.

School Choice Wisconsin President Jim Bender was the most vocal critic of the waiver during last week’s public hearing. The waiver, he says, would allow the state to remove voucher schools from choice programs and seize power from charter school authorizers without giving them any chance for improvement.

“Unfortunately, the waiver released by DPI does not hold all schools accountable equally across all sectors, and details by which schools will be measured and held accountable are yet to be determined,” Bender testified Thursday. “If approved as written, the waiver would allow DPI to remove MPCP and PPSCP schools from the school choice programs and to supersede charter school authorizers that fell into the lowest five percent of persistently low performing schools that fail to improve and meet certain yet to be determined benchmarks within three years. On the other hand, public schools would be given a series of three-year time periods with several options to choose from to work toward improvement.”

The big issue lies in the fact that the improvement window for voucher and charter schools is limited, which is not the case for public schools.

The lack of specific language for both voucher and charter schools – the majority of which operate under very different guidelines from traditional public schools – is a concern for School Choice Wisconsin. It suggests that the waiver will increase the power that the state holds over choice schools. According to their research, this is something that has not been a piece of other states’ applications in areas where vouchers and tax-credit scholarships assist students.

The biggest issue for these schools, according to Bender, is a limited window for improvement. Regular public schools that are deemed lowest performing would be put on a rolling three-year intervention period in hopes of improvement. They would have no strict timeline for closure if changes cannot be made. Choice and charter schools would have only a three-year window before closure, and only one shot at improvement. The disparity between the two groups, testified Bender, is inherently unfair.

Since the waiver is still being shaped by input from legislators and others, it’s imperative to let your state Representatives and Senators know that public, charter and voucher schools all need to be on level playing field when it comes to improvement for schools that perform poorly.

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Act 10 Success Diminishes Recall Effort

An accurate assessment of the recall picture.

As communities continue to provide Act 10 success stories, the efforts of recall organizers against Governor Walker become more difficult. And with tax bills arriving soon, the positive results for Wisconsin taxpayers will make those recall efforts even more ominous.

Governor Walker’s reforms have produced some stunning results, turning a budget around that was structurally unsound. School districts and communities throughout the state are in much better financial shape due to the moves undertaken by the Walker administration. The following results were tabulated by the Wisconsin Association of School District Administrators, based on responses from over 83% of all school districts:

  • New teacher hires outnumber layoffs by 1213 positions
  • 75% of districts maintained or decreased class sizes for K-3
  • 67% of districts maintained or decreased class sizes for 4-6
  • 92% of districts kept or expanded sports programs
  • 89% of districts kept or expanded technology support staff
  • 85% or more kept or increased their guidance, social work, and psychology staff
  • 90% of districts kept or expanded gifted and talented staff
  • 96% of districts kept or expanded early childhood staff
  • 96% of districts kept or expanded AP sections and courses
  • 82% of districts kept or expanded vocational/technical programs
  • 82% of districts kept or expanded art programs
  • 84% of districts kept or expanded music programs
  • 87% of districts kept or expanded foreign language programs

Even more telling though were the results from three districts from Southern Wisconsin that didn’t implement the reform tools.

The most telling results of the WASDA survey came from responses by the Milwaukee, Kenosha and Janesville districts. Those districts accounted for 68% of all teacher layoffs in the state, yet only represent 12.8% of Wisconsin students. These three districts did not adopt the reforms put in place by Governor Walker and Act 10, and were not able to utilize the tools offered to control costs.

So when you see the ads put out by recall organizers, liberal 3rd party groups and public sector unions keep in mind their “information” to support their claims comes from districts that didn’t utilize the tools offered via Act 10.

As pointed out, the whole picture isn’t presented:

If they were honest, they would discuss how 51% of districts reduced extracurricular programs in 2004 (according to WEAC), before Act 10 tools were available. Or the fact that over the past five years, the property tax levy has increased by an average of $181 million per year. Not so this year, as the K-12 school tax levy will actually decrease by $47 million.

Be sure to point out these successes when you encounter those pushing to recall Governor Scott Walker.  In any discussion about the direction of Wisconsin point out not only how Act 10 has been a success, point out as well the results being seen where the tools offered weren’t implemented.


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