He's Not My President?

Thoreau: "Government is Best Which Governs Least"

Obama’s Education Secretary Choice Average at Best

So here we go, why aspire to the best and brightest when you can accept average at best?  Arne Duncan is Barack Obama’schoice for Secretary of Education, yet why choose Mr. Duncan when the reports coming from Illinois are that the educational system is average at best and for those whom live there, they might even argue with you that it is actually quite below average. 

What are Arne Duncan’s qualifications?  Did Mr. Obama choose Arne Duncan because his jump shot is far superior to Mr. Obama’s?  Did he choose him because he is a fellow Harvard alumn?  Or was it because Arne Duncan and Mayor Daley are so tight?  Did Duncan actually call Daley his mentor in the news conference?  I’d have to go back and check the video.

With all that is going on with Blagojevich, it seems silly appointing another Chicago crony to the national political scene.  Is this just a Daley machine political appointment?  Or was it a payoff to the Unions to keep them happy since Chicago ranks 7th in teacher’s salaries and around the same ranking in student to teacher ratio.

I mean wasn’t there someone else in the nation, maybe from a State where statistics showed that the State was excelling in educational reform, for this appointment?  Wouldn’t that be the new fresh change Obama supporter were looking for?  Why just settle for average. 

The following is statistical information for Illinois’ average school system.

 

Illinois

 
ilc
 
Contact Information
Testing Director: Joyce Zurkowski
NAEP Coordinator: Andy Metcalf
IL State Dept. of Education

 


Student, School/District Characteristics for Public Schools
 
Student Characteristics
Number enrolled: 2,111,706
Percent in Title I schools: 54.4%
With Individualized Education Programs (IEP): 15.3%
Percent in limited-English proficiency programs:
Percent eligible for free/reduced lunch: 37.2%
 
Racial/Ethnic Background
White: 56.4%
Black: 20.6%
Hispanic: 19.0%
Asian/Pacific Islander: 3.8%
American Indian/Alaskan Native: 0.2%
School/District Characteristics
Number of school districts: 875*
Number of schools: 4,434
Number of charter schools: 29
Per-pupil expenditures: $9,175
Pupil/teacher ratio: 15.8
Number of FTE teachers: 133,857
 
‘–‘ : data unavailable
* Local school districts only (type 1, 2)
Source: Common Core of Data, 2005-2006 school year (non-adjudicated)
<!– (except per-pupil expenditures, 1998-99)
–>
 


History of NAEP Participation and Performance
 
      Scale Score


Achievement Level


 
      State [Nat. Percent at or Above  
Subject Grade  Year  Avg. Avg.]*  Basic  Proficient Advanced Graphics

Mathematics
(scale: 0-500)
4 2000 223 [224] 63 20 2
2003 233 [234] 73 32 5
2005 233 [237] 74 32 5
2007 237 [239] 79 36 6
 
8 1990n 261 [262] 50 15 2
2000 275 [272] 67 26 4
2003 277 [276] 66 29 6
2005 278 [278] 68 29 5
2007 280 [280] 70 31 7

Reading
(scale: 0-500)
4 2003 216 [216] 61 31 8
2005 216 [217] 62 29 7
2007 219 [220] 65 32 8
 
8 2003 266 [261] 77 35 3
2005 264 [260] 75 31 3
2007 263 [261] 75 30 2

Science
(scale: 0-300)
4 2000 150 [145] 68 31 3
2005 148 [149] 64 27 2
 
8 2000 148 [148] 59 29 3
2005 148 [147] 58 27 3

Writing
(scale: 0-300)
8 2007 160 [154] 90 37 2
* Includes public schools only
n Accommodations were not permitted for this assessment

Source

For more information Arne Duncan’s record you can find it here.

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Written by KJ Kaufman

December 16, 2008 at 11:21 am

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