Wednesday, November 09, 2005

County shutting down one of best-performing schools in Maryland

Montgomery County public education officials were shown that they have decided to shut down one of the best-performing elementary schools in the entire state of Maryland.

Seven Locks Elementary School PTA Parliamentarian Jay M. Weinstein eviscerated the county's repeated claims that the planned shut-down of the school and its replacement with the Kendale mega-school is in the best interests of the children.

Though he didn't say it, his testimony raised more questions about possible crooked deals between Montgomery County politicians and developers.

Weinstein presented the board with the following facts:

• In 4th grade MSA math testing, the number one school in the entire state of Maryland was Seven Locks Elementary.

• In the MSA Reading Scale Score Chart, 80 percent of the recently graduated 5th grade class scored "Advanced," the highest category. That compares with 40 percent in Montgomery County and 30 percent statewide.

• In the MSA Mathematics Scale Score Chart, 69 percent of Seven Locks fifth graders scored "Advanced," compared to 31 percent in Montgomery County and 17 percent statewide.

While crediting the children and the SLES principal and faculty, Weinstein says that one "cannot underestimate the value of the Seven Locks small school environment and the family atmosphere that nurtures the kids and makes the school work so well."