Friday, October 5, 2012

Union County schools top list

Union County's Marvin Ridge and Early College high schools topped this year's Charlotte Magazine list of best public high schools, with Charlotte-Mecklenburg's Providence High in third place.

The magazine used an array of data to rank high schools in Mecklenburg, Union and Cabarrus counties.
The highest Cabarrus school was Jay M. Robinson High at No. 11.

As the article notes,  any list based on number-crunching provides a less-than-perfect portrait of schools.  "We offer these rankings not as the final word on school quality, but as a single tool in the decision-making and evaluation process for parents, students, and educators,"  the article says.

One of the biggest challenges is timely data.  For instance,  the magazine used 2011 SAT scores  (2012 results came out in mid-September, too late for the October issue).  That eliminated Rocky River and Hough high schools,  which didn't have senior classes in 2011 but did last year.  Data on class sizes,  teacher qualifications and enrollment in advanced classes come from the state report cards,  which are also a year out of date.

Still,  if you care about local high schools,  it's hard to resist checking where your school landed.  At the bottom are West Charlotte and Garinger  (listed as five small schools, though it has reconsolidated).  Unfortunately,  there's nothing in the latest data to suggest that has changed.

43 comments:

Anonymous said...

So half of the top ten are in Union County? Either that says a lot about UCPS or it says a lot about CMS.

Anonymous said...

Maybe it has everything to do with parent involvement, parent educational levels, income and support. It is easy to be a great school when you start off with great families.

Anonymous said...

Why does every Charlotte publication only focus on Mecklenburg, Cabarrus and Union counties? Do the rest of the surrounding counties not count? or are they afraid to compare themselves to them?

Anonymous said...

It's a Charlotte paper. That's why.

Exactly how far out do they have to reach? Asheville?

Wiley Coyote said...

Marvin Ridge High School:

Eligible for discounted/free lunch: 2.5%

84% White, 10% Black, 4% Hispanic, 2% Asian or Pacific Islander, and less than 1% American Indian or Alaskan Native

Providence High School:

Eligible for discounted/free lunch: 10.8%

77.6% White, 7.4% Black, 4.4% Hispanic, 8.3% Asian or Pacific Islander, and less than 1% American Indian or Alaskan Native

Anonymous said...

I don't think it has much to do with ANYTHING! Comparing Union County Schools to CMS is APPLES TO ORANGES!

Total UCPS students - less than 35,000.

Total CMS students - over 144,000.

That's a big difference in size.

UCPS doesn't have as many advanced courses as CMS also. Just saying the comparison is wrong.

Anonymous said...

It has nothing to do with black/white; Rich/poor. I taught in both school districts. It's something called DISCIPLINE! Period

Anonymous said...

Anyplace , but CMS not very surprising.

Anonymous said...

9:07, you are right but I would add too is look at how the administrations treat the teachers.

Anonymous said...

A better comparison of UCPS would be Mooresville's school system. They are about the same size.

jon golden said...

Having left CMS for UCPS, I can only say that UCPS is the FAR SUPERIOR school district IN ALL ASPECTS of the educational process. The administration (top-down) is amazing and supportive. The parents are supportive of educational goals and and appreciate the benefit of and need for an education. The students are exceptional and driven. In three years in a UCPS high school, I have NEVER written a disciplinary referral. In 10 years in CMS schools, I had written hundreds, only to see students go unpunished by administration and parents unconcerned. As for the comment about not having as many advanced courses as CMS, I don't know from where that foolish statement could have come--obviously no one with knowledge of the district could make such a comment.

Anonymous said...

If you take 3 mile radius of Marvin Ridge and look at the average house hold income - it tells a lot about it. I think the educated - professional parents make a big difference in kids' studies. Building up the atmosphere at home to perform well and better then past is most important. The friends at home and at school play big role also in setting up the atmosphere but parents have lot more control on relocating or providing that.

Anonymous said...

A school is nothing more than a reflection of the community it serves.

Trying to force high-income neighborhoods into low-income schools with a sledgehammer over the head didn't solve anything and only created more hostility and resentment. It also created a system that is more segregated now than it ever was. In an futile effort to make everything "fair", low-income, minority and students with parents in the country illegally were all given "special" rights, benefits and status. When my white suburban child with college educated parents fills out a college application they are at a disadvantage compared to low-income students, ESL students and minority students who all have special boxes to check off in order to "diversify" college campuses. My kid isn't on the same playing field as a kid at Garinger. My kids is competing against other kids like him not different from him. Under these circumstances, why would I want my child to attend a diverse school for nothing more than the sake of diversity?

Anonymous said...

I looked at the chart and I don't understand how Marvin Ridge came out on top. Providence had the same or higher scores on everything except graduation rate. Can someone explain it? Just the way they weighted Graduation rate?

Anonymous said...

Now, maybe y'all understand why we left...

Anonymous said...

Anon 12:32.

Good points.

"Diversity" as we define it for our schools (and most workplaces) is a ruse.

It's a ruse because it is based primarily on ethnicity (skin color) and income (which is another way to say ethnicity).

That is only ONE kind of diversity and may not be the most important.

True diversity comes from people with different outlooks and expertise not just skin color.

When people have studied the benefit of diverse input in problem solving, they don't just put a bunch of people in a room with different skin colors.

They choose people with different EXPERTISE.

Like mixing doctors, accountants, lawyers, social scientists, etc., etc.

They want a DIVERSITY OF IDEAS.

NOT SKIN COLOR...

Anonymous said...

Note to CMS - close some more schools create some more diversity and you wont have a state funded budget. All the families will have left as they are already doing to go to other schools.

T H said...
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T H said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

5:00
We make allowances for grammatical errors, spelling mistakes, outrageous opinions and just about anything that anyone has to say here but we (regulars) don't have a high tolerance for personal attacks against specific teachers or individuals. This isn't being politically correct it's called being civil. Everyone has some beef with CMS but your issue is at the individual school level involving individual people. It's OK to say you had a bad experience with a teacher and principal at CHMS because your child did a report on Glenn Beck who, BTW, isn't exactly known for being humble, soft-spoken and unbiased in his opinions. Maybe this is the point the teacher was trying to make? It's OK to speak your mind and have a difference of opinion? Kind of an all American concept to me (incomplete sentence). The good news is your child has plenty of opportunity to brush up on his constitutional rights and give another oral report on Mark Levine and Rush Limbaugh. Maybe your child can spearhead a Tea Party Club at school? Colleges LOVE kids who demonstrate leadership potential and pave the way as pioneers. Consider this an opportunity!

The CMS school board is another matter but there is a line here that has to be drawn here too.


Anonymous said...

The SAT score for Butler needs to be revised to include M + CR + W. The correct score is 1527 (rather than 1035). This is the standard appled to all the other schools. This contributes significantly for the drop in rankings from 11 last year to 25 this year. Please adjust and correct the rankings- The hard working students / teachers deserve it.

Anonymous said...

TH - be careful. The last time someone created a BS charge against a teacher at Community House that guy received a cool mil...just sayin'

Since you put the teacher's name out there, have the ba11s to put yours too.

signed,
Art Van De Lay

Anonymous said...

The irony about the Glenn Beck report is that a student living in the Community House Middle School assignment zone probably would have had a much more receptive audience at Eastway Middle School. Come on. Community House serves the Ballantyne area which isn't exactly known for being a liberal bastion of politics, thoughts and ideas. Even so, there are plenty of Republicans (myself included) who think Glenn Beck is a whack job. He's entertainment. Radio porn.

Wiley Coyote said...

...Glenn Beck isn't the issue.

The point is, the student was bullied by a teacher.

Look at what happened to the girl who wore a Romney t-shirt to school this week.

Anonymous said...

She report her parents to DSS for making her wear the shirt?

Wiley Coyote said...

9:06..

Post the information that shows her parents forced her to wear the t-shirt.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

There was at least one school that celebrated Obama Day after the last election. The school had Obama parties the entire day during the president's inaugruation. A middle school student ask me if I voted for that "bad white man". He did. He was quite adement. He wanted to know if I voted for the bad white man.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

The "bad white man" being a decorated Vietnam vet and tortured prisoner of war.

Bill Stevens said...

I wondered who sold the child on "the bad white man"?

Anonymous said...

The graduation rate listed for Providence is incorrect. Providence's graduation rate was over 94%. 94.something. In fact, Providence was awarded by the State Superintendent for its high graduation cohort rate. If a magazine is going to do rankings...it should use the most accurate and correct data.

Wiley Coyote said...

5:18...

Accurate and data in public education doesn't mix.

It's like oil and water.

Anonymous said...

dang wiley, can't understand a joke? always soooo serious.

Wiley Coyote said...

10:06..

When you tell a joke, I'll laugh.

Ann Doss Helms said...

My apologies -- I normally delete remarks about individual teachers, but I went out of town for a long weekend and am just checking this strand. Thanks to all of you who did a good job of laying out the ground rules and defending the individuals.

Anonymous said...

So, Ann, why haven't you yet deleted the post referring to a teacher by name if you have been aware of the post since this afternoon? Whether the teacher been defended or not, shouldn't that post be taken off the board?

Ann Doss Helms said...

Done, 9:13. I was wavering because it had been out there and has sparked so many related threads, but based on a couple of suggestions, I have taken down all that name the individuals. If anyone else is still jumping in, that's where the comments about a Glenn Beck assignment come from.

Anonymous said...

If the child was ridiculed and exposed to 20-30 classmates. They sure do know his name. Why not the teacher's

derre said...



Note to CMS - close some more schools create some more diversity and you wont have a state funded budget. All the families will have left as they are already doing to go to other schools.

Read more here: http://obsyourschools.blogspot.com/2012/10/union-county-schools-top-magazine-list.html#storylink=cpy

Kate said...

Maybe it has everything to do with parent involvement, parent educational levels, income and support. It is easy to be a great school when you start off with great families.

Justin said...


This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Nick said...

9:07, you are right but I would add too is look at how the administrations treat the teachers.