The students took their standardized test. Everyone waited to see if they had learned anything over the last quarter of school.
When asked why a student’s performance decreased tremendously, the student replied hopefully, “Does that mean I’m out of your class?”
When told that she scored higher than her end-of-year growth goal on this the second assessment, the student says smiling sheepishly, “Oh. That’s because I didn’t really try on the first one.”
Weirder still is that if an observer wasn’t told the students were the lowest performing in the entire country, the observer would never have guessed it. Most students had no clue what the test scores were “out of”, yet they proceeded to celebrate and congratulate each other in precisely the same manner as the highest performing students do upon receiving grades.
What really takes the cake, however, was the “lead” teacher’s reaction to the generally positive test results. In an email to the principal she asked:
“Do we have money we could spend as rewards for the students who are proficient or who have growth on the assessment? How about $5 in “school cash” toward a school colors shirt/hoodie?”
Yep. Kids who hate the–admittedly ridiculous and difficult to enforce–dress code (only really concerned with preventing the kids from wearing gang colors) that leads them to choose to just wear school t-shirts and hoodies; kids whose parents have failed to create in them any appreciable amount of dignity or self-respect from which they could base an internal motivation to succeed at anything academic; these kids are going to be happy to have earned a ratty t-shirt.
One day and a wake up left. Pray for me.
The principal responded “yes” by the way.