Theyhave the testing scores of all local elementary schools in the newspaper today. Eddystone actually didn’t do that bad. %41 were considered “advanced” in math with %0 being considered “below average” (the only school in Ridley to do so). Reading wasn’t as good, only %16 were considered advanced, but reading was down all over the region. Woodlyn was by far the worst in Ridley with %29 above average in math and %9 in reading.
Of course, the schools along the main line are another story, many have %70 to %80 of their kids above average. While schools in the Chester Upland district were under %10 for math and reading. That is a lot of disparity in a relatively small area.
So what is it that makes the big difference? My hypothesis is breakfast. The kids that do better are eating breakfast.
But seriously, I wonder a lot about that difference. I’m sure that there is a direct correlation to the percentage of parents that went to college, but that may be just a result of the mysterious underlying cause. Some kids are coached ab ovo to take these tests and do well on them. I think even if most parents in Eddystone wanted to do that, they would not have the ability to do so, because they don’t have the information needed themselves (both the knowledge of the subjects and just as importantly, knowledge of the intricacies of the academic system.)
For instance my mother was extremely supportive of my academic interests, but she did not know where to place the emphasis – meaning she didn’t force-feed me the stuff that would be on these tests. If I wanted to know about the Titanic (not on the exams I assume) at the expense of my math knowledge, she would support that. I’m glad it turned out that way. But other parents know how to play the game – and they do. So what is the right thing for the parent do? Allow the child to pursue their interests at the cost of test scores? Who knows. What I do know is that we should all be very skeptical of any wishy washy “follow your dreams” “grades don’t matter” popular wisdom because depending on what you want to do, grades may determine the course of your life.
The total results are here.