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Thompson: When Simple Demographics Miss The Point

Lead620The Daily Oklahoman's depiction of my old school (Centennial High School Succeeding in a Place of Failure) and the comments following the article tell a sad but important story.  Centennial has a NCLB API of 264 on a scale of 1500 - despite receiving what administrators claim is the same funding as similar schools.  But Centennial isn't like other schools when you get past surface demographics.  Violent, chaotic schools, with intense concentrations of intergenerational poverty and feeder schools with poor performance are different.  Here and in other places, a school's percentage of minority kids and poverty rate don't do justice to the challenges being addressed.  - JT

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