The headlines today read 'A Day In Cleveland's Schools'.
The Cleveland Plain Dealer sent 30 reporters, unannounced, into the high schools to get a first hand look at what was really going on. The reporters didn't discover anything that surprised the students, or the staff, who work at the schools . The high schools that have a reputation for working well had strong leadership, and well-behaved students. The schools that are reputed to have problems, had problems. They also had administrators who were not welcoming to the reporters, naturally not wanting any dirty laundry aired in public.
My question is...Now what?
What will the public do with the information gathered by the reporters?
What will district administrators do with it?
Journalists made people aware of what the city schools are like on a typical day, without the dog and pony shows that usually accompany a reporter's visit. They identified some things that were good, and some things that were troubling. Will anyone take this information and look at it with the intention of using it to solve the problems brought to the attention of the public? Or will this article simply serve as fodder for the whiners and complainers?
I've heard from numerous people who say the problems in the Cleveland schools are so immense, so overwhelming, no one can possibly solve them. Rather than throw up our hands in despair because we don't have enough money to solve all the problems, let's start by identifying the things we CAN do that will have a big impact on the learning environment.
I say the problems aren't so big if you tackle them one at a time.
Why don't we start with one common issue the reporters identified today? Kids roaming the halls. Figure out what is needed to keep all the kids in the classrooms in every school, implement a solution, then move on to the next problem.
Isn't this just common sense?