Louisiana’s 1,300 public schools will still be receiving letter grades this fall instead of stars and labels, despite a bill from state Sen. Jonathan Perry that would have delayed the new grading system. The Advocate reports that Perry, R-Abbeville, backed by the state’s teacher unions and the Louisiana School Boards Association, wanted to halt for two years the new system of assigning letter grades to schools, but the Senate Education Committee on Thursday voted 5-4 against his bill.
The new system was created as a way to simplify the way the state measures school performance, with supporters of letter grades saying that stars and labels “mean little to students and parents:”
Perry says the new grading system could have negative effects on teachers and others in the education field, but opposition from a BESE board member and Gov. Bobby Jindal’s education adviser prevailed:
“This is an attack on accountability,” said Stafford Palmieri, education policy adviser for Gov. Bobby Jindal and an opponent of the bill. “Accountability is the num-ber one tool we have to im-prove education in Louisiana,” Palmieri added.
Chas Roemer, a member of the state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education, or BESE, also denounced the proposal. “This is about giving honest information to parents,” Roe-mer said of the grading system, which he helped develop.
Under the system approved by BESE in December, grades will assigned to public schools based on annual school performance scores, which primarily reflect how students fared on key tests. Schools can get a plus on their letter grades if they meet state growth targets and a mi-nus if their annual score drops.
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NOV 21 Bobby Jindal is headed to Iowa again, the Des Moines Register reports here. The paper outlines what's going on with Bobby's non-campaign for president, and there's a lot of stuff here -- too bad none of it sounds like somebody running Louisiana. Hey, wasn't that the job he wanted?
NOV 21 The end of the term has come for the grand jury investigating a lucrative Medicaid contract and a former state health official's ties to the company that won it, the Advocate reports here, but that doesn't mean the investigation into this stinkiness is over. There are still some things to look into, the lead prosecutor says.
NOV 21 With the passage of two amendments to Louisiana's much-amended constitution (it has been amended almost 200 times now) higher education has an even bigger target on its collective back, columnist Jim Beam opines in this post. Higher ed used to share the spotlight with health care, but that has changed, he says.
NOV 21 Here's a weird one: The Louisiana Cannabis Industry Association has endorsed Bill Cassidy for the U.S. Senate. Apparently, Mary Landrieu said she wouldn't consider support of medical marijuana but Cassidy said he would, WWL reports here.
NOV 21 Solange Knowles, possibly best-known for assaulting her brother-in-law in an elevator while wearing an ugly dress after the Met Ball, got married in the Marigny Opera House this past weekend, the New York Times reports here. Knowles, who has a house in the Faubourg Marigny district and owns a boutique in the Quarter, married Alan Ferguson.
NOV 21 This post on the Fuel Fix blog outlines a $1.4 billion move announced this week by the Apache Corp. that includes the sale of assets in south Louisiana. The company's interests in more than 90,000 acres in south Louisiana are some of the assets being sold, the post reports.
NOV 21 One (possible) positive from Hurricane Katrina is a comprehensive zoning ordinance for New Orleans. Nine years later, we're getting closer to that being finalized, but the current version has some problems. Here's the latest in a series of posts on The Lens in which residents give their views of the draft; this one is more amusing than most.
NOV 21 The new NOLA smoking ordinance is going to harsh your (nicotine) buzz, man. This post on Gambit outlines the high (or low, as the case may be) points: it includes electronic cigarettes and hookahs in its bans; eliminates smoking within 25 feet of any building's public entrance and in any public space - or near any public space - operated by the city.
NOV 20 Politico reports here that Bobby Jindal won't be kept out of the presidential race by anyone else's candidacy. (If he's running, which he's not, 'cause he's not done prayin' on it) So he's not interested in who is running, or what the polls say, or how much money he's got? K.
NOV 20 NOLA Defender's Tiny Daiquiri has a little fun with Bobby Jindal's Meet the Press appearance in this post. Bobby is still prayin' on whether or not he'll run for the job he's been running for over the past three years, Tiny says.
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