An ArmchairMayor.ca editorial by Mel Rothenburger.
The Fraser Institute’s annual elementary school rankings are out. This, of course, drives educators bonkers.
Most schools in the Kamloops district rank so-so, a few get high grades, and a few others — like Arthur Hatton, Marion Schilling, and A.E. Perry — got some explaining to do.
The independent St. Ann’s is highest, with Our Lady of Perpetual Help close behind.
They’re ranked on a 10-point scale for comparison purposes, and it’s common for independent schools to outperform public schools. Those who brush off this annual report card point out it’s based on provincewide Foundation Skills Assessment results.
This can’t possibly provide enough information for proper comparisons, complain school administrators. There are so many other things to consider at the local level, like demographics and economics and areas of concentration and all that.
Sure, that’s true, but I think those educators just don’t like the very idea of a competitive education system in which the achievements of one school are compared to another.
Some will also make note of the source, and will automatically discount the report because it comes from the Fraser Institute. Admittedly, the Fraser Institute comes by its description as a “right-wing think tank” honestly.
It churns out analyses almost daily extolling the virtues of oil pipelines and free enterprise, offering reassurances that Canada’s environment is doing just fine, declaring the weaknesses of our healthcare system, and sounding alarm bells about government spending.
But it also does some worthwhile studies, such as their examination of surgery wait times and this just-released school report card.
Why is the school report important? Because using admittedly limited criteria, it provides a valuable comparison of how our schools are doing, and which ones have room for improvement in specific subjects.
There’s nothing wrong with that. The educators who whine about it should go back to the classroom and figure out how to get better report cards.
I’m Mel Rothenburger, the Armchair Mayor.
Mel Rothenburger’s Armchair Mayor editorials appear Mondays through Thursdays on CFJC- TV. His Armchair Mayor column is published Saturdays on ArmchairMayor.ca and CFJC Today. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.