A new school year is starting and if you want to listen to an interesting perspective on the success of our high schools, check out this morning's podcast.

Last week we had a conversation with the state superintendent of public instruction Elsie Arntzen and I again brought up academic standards and how we are failing our graduates. She said only 15% of our graduating students are proficient in math. For those of you who also aren't, 85% are not and graduate anyway.

We're really doing them a favor, aren't we? Turning them loose in a society without enough skills to survive. Can't even figure out the change you are owed.

Reading and comprehension skills are also dismal but not as bad as math. If you can't figure out how to make a box of macaroni and cheese you're probably not ready to graduate. It involves reading instructions and fractions.

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More importantly, why is no one ever held accountable? Think about it: If only 15% of your workers were decent at their job, would your company do ok? There is a shortage of over 300,000 teachers in America right now according to the National Education Association and more and more are leaving.


Maybe the $5.1 million dollars in bonuses that the school district two administrators got should have been based on test scores and not covid stress.

Three Billings High Schools
Credit: Nicole Riley, Townsquare Media

We are falling further and further behind every year. We used to be the best-educated country in the world and now we're pretty much middle of the pack when it comes to academic achievement across subjects, as Pew Research Center noted in 2017. Embarrassing for a country that spends so much on the system. Will it ever change?

See ya tomorrow at 5 a.m.

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