Superintendent’s Thoughts for February 2016
As we approach this year’s high stakes testing I hope our public sees that this process has many flaws embedded in the testing. The test is at best a reflection of how a student does on a given day within a rigorous academic focus. I think there is much more to a child’s education than just math, science, social studies and language arts. We have worked very hard to differentiate the educational opportunities we can offer each child. Make no mistake these areas of study are very important but they should not totally define whether a student is successful or not. Our Practical and Fine Arts are also very important. Our community has invested financially to make sure we can offer these other areas of study. The Greensburg High School vocational area is a great example of how we provide resources and hands on instruction to make students job ready upon leaving high school. We continue to grow in the vocational area and are putting many students to work through internships with local industry. This type of skill mastery does not often show up on a test. Our goal is to stretch each student’s ability and provide opportunities for them to acquire a skill set that will make them ready for any challenge.
Greensburg students must be able to compete on a world-wide scale. When you examine the facts you will see that we have a large number of graduates that go into a variety of fields of study at some of the country’s top universities. Whether a student chooses to attend Harvard or a diesel repair program we want to make sure they are prepared for the challenge. Quality classroom instruction is the greatest factor in determining whether a student is engaged in learning or ready to drop out. Greensburg doesn’t want anyone to drop out. The point of these comments is to garner your help and support in telling the Indiana Department of Education and State Board of Education to lay off the mandates and go back to letting educational decisions be controlled at the local level.
I hope we have a great level of achievement and growth on the new Pearson ISTEP test but I also hope this year our students find one more thing they are really good at and run with it.
Tom Hunter, Superintendent