Op-eds and Articles

Langhorne for The Washington Post, “D.C. Graduation Fraud? Not in the Charter Schools.”

By / 6.18.2018

For the past six months, scandal after scandal has come to light in the nation’s capital as the media’s interrogation lamps have shone on D.C. Public Schools.

In November, WAMU exposed a graduation scandal at Ballou High School, leading the Office of the State Superintendent to launch an investigation into DCPS.  The investigation revealed district-wide complicity in a systemic culture that pressured teachers to pass students regardless of their attendance or academic performance. The report concluded that one in three 2017 DCPS graduates were awarded diplomas in violation of district policies.

Best-case scenario, 67 percent of the class of 2018 graduated. That’s a significant drop from the 73 percent rate the district claimed in 2017.

What’s happened in DCPS is tragic — not only that the number of students graduating declined but also that DCPS has been graduating students who aren’t prepared for life beyond school.

Yet there is a story of real academic progress in the nation’s capital. It’s the story of the other public schools, the ones educating nearly 50 percent of public school students. It’s the story of D.C.’s charter schools.

Continue reading at The Washington Post.