REPORT: Few Spokane Area Schools Rank High
OFFICIAL RELEASE: The Public School Accountability Index, a new report released by Washington Policy Center using the State Board of Education rankings, rates the quality of schools in the five Spokane-area school districts.
East Farms Elementary and Holmes Elementary are ranked the two worst schools. Both are listed as Struggling, the lowest ranking, indicating school officials are failing to educate students according to state standards. Ness Elementary is the only school in the Spokane area to receive a rating of Exemplary. Overall, 58 of the 102 local schools in Spokane are rated no better than fair.
The best and worst schools in each district are listed below.
Spokane Public School District: Best: Moran Prairie Elementary Worst: Holmes Elementary
Central Valley School District: Best: Sunrise Elementary Worst: Bowdish Middle
East Valley School District: Best: Continuous Curriculum Worst: East Farms Elementary
Mead School District: Best: Mountainside Middle Worst: Farwell Elementary
West Valley School District: Best: Ness Elementary Worst: Pasadena Park Elementary
The WPC Public School Accountability Index is a ranking of the 2,161 schools in Washington conducted by the State Board of Education to determine whether local school officials are fulfilling their paramount duty under the state constitution to provide a quality education for every child. The Index ranks schools as Exemplary, Very Good, Good, Fair or Struggling. A rating of Struggling is an indication local school officials are failing in their educational mission.
- 597,000, or nearly 60%, of Washington children attend Fair or Struggling public schools.
- Only 93,000, less than 10%, of students attend a Very Good or Exemplary public school.
- The great majority of schools, 1,208, rank as only Fair or Struggling,
- Only 212 schools, barely 10%, rank as either Very Good or Exemplary.
- The poor academic performance is not due to lack of support from taxpayers – funding for Washington public education is at record highs.
- Public schools receive just over $10 billion a year, or $10,200 per student, in operating funds, plus an additional $1.3 billion for school construction.
- Since 1980 education spending, adjusted for inflation, has more than doubled, while the number of students, due to smaller families, has increased by only a third.
- There are fewer students today in relation to the total population than in the past, and spending per student is the highest ever.
Governor Gregoire says she found that more spending does not improve learning for children: "I put a lot more money into K-12. But then you sit there and say, ‘Why have I not been able to get the result I set out to achieve?'" Policy changes that would improve learning for children without increasing spending are described in Washington Policy Center's education reform plan, Eight Practical Ways to Reverse the Decline in Public Schools.
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