What explains Cordova’s sudden departure?
As a classroom teacher and administrator at both public and private schools for 25 years I’d like to commend you (Front Porch, January 2021, What explains Cordova’s sudden departure?) for pointing out the schism that dominates American education today and Denver in particular—resulting in declining reading, math and study-skill scores (as measured by any evaluative tool you’d care to choose). To combat this problem, apparently Denver Public Schools has split into two factions:
Faction One: The Board wants to tear down the old system and rebuild it with something that’s not yet clearly articulated. They want an end to crummy test scores. Very reasonable.
Faction Two: Ex-superintendent Cordova wanted “cooperation over competition, a holistic approach to evaluation, and a focus on transparency, equity and social/emotional development.” Very reasonable.
In the spirit of reasonableness allow me to make a suggestion that I believe could lead to cooperation between the two factions: include in your mission statement, “To teach ALL kids to succeed with reading, math and study-skills.” This clearly articulated goal has dropped out of American education, to the detriment of our city, state, national and international test scores.
I’d like to see ALL school and home-schooled kids succeed with reading, math and study-skills just 2 hours a day – leaving the rest of the day free for all the other subjects. I’d like to hear about one school (anywhere) that has as its mission teaching all kids to succeed with reading, math and study skills. Since these skills are at the core of academic success you’d have to believe that schools would know how to teach them well. Sounds easy, doesn’t it?
Rory Donaldson, Central Park resident