Why are some schools with the same population and the same basic amount of money more successful than others. | Rethinking Education

a1If ever a question merits an answer; if ever our children deserve a high-quality education.  This thoughtful piece by Kathreen Harrison is a good place to start….

“Intriguing and hopeful both is the study’s important conclusion that some schools prove the exception – their students are poor but their achievement is relatively high. The study encourages using the example of such schools to help less successful schools reach their students more effectively. Makes sense to me. You’d think educators would be scrambling to go over the findings of this study.

Here’s the reality: those who most definitely need to heed studies like this one – school board members; superintendents; principals in low-income school districts – will probably not even read them.”

Why are some schools with the same population and the same basic amount of money more successful than others. | Rethinking Education.

….or go directly to the study: poverty_achievement_Web(1)

43 responses to “Why are some schools with the same population and the same basic amount of money more successful than others. | Rethinking Education

  1. concernedparentalso

    Here we go again, first of all another lie comes to the surface, knowles is running again. THOUGHT HE WAS DONE? I guess its
    time to start another committee for SAD 25. Over 5 sets of parents
    have gone to the middle school about the new math. Kids with A and B are now getting D and F and the class rooms are out of control. Theres no control from this principal. Our kids are getting messed
    up. And what i hear, they have the wright. There is one teacher that
    is videoing taping him self teaching the math. Hes is standing rate
    there while the kids watch. What is going on. Parents are being
    refused to come talk about these problems at the school.
    How much more TALKING are we going to do. LETS ACT.


    • ….sounds like the 5 parents are acting… The Withdrawal committee is acting to separate from the RSU to regain control over money. More needs to be done, though, certainly. What would YOU suggest? Lead on!


  2. concernedparentalso

    Good morning lisa, I think the meetings should mean more than just
    talking about what we already no. I think that when somebody is fired
    up about an issue at SAD,25 i think we should listen to him or her
    unstead of turning our heads and brushing them off. [ just because some work there]. With in my family we will not use the word RSU 50
    it is SAD 25 and its always going to be. [thats a start] Get in touch
    with people that has done it, to come speak. Put things thats are really going on, in the paper. [EVERY WEEK ] thats a good start.
    going to the paper, so every body sees what is happening. Do you no that allot of the board members and employees have been orderd
    by KNOWLES not to read Timber classrooms . This is strong arming. Why do you think MALONE and KNOWLES got RYAN to
    be his right hand hammer. [ But it didnt work with Mr Tapley] The only
    way to do this is, telling the TRUTH about every issue that goes on
    at SAD 25 , and telling the board and MALONE that there WRONG.
    over and over again. [with big groups].


    • Good Morning, Dear Reader! I agree — we should listen! Intelligent people are able to entertain a thought without necessarily accepting it. You touch on an issue, though, of the difficult position employees find themselves in. Retaliation is a very real concern, and we need to help them find their voice in a way that will NOT jeopardize their livelihoods. WE need to do the heavy lifting here. Have you heard of the quote, “There is no higher office than that of the citizen”? You have the power, and their authority over you is entirely imaginary.

      “Timbered Classrooms” is the blog people fuss about, but won’t admit to reading… To use one’s authority to tell people what not to READ is an abuse of that power. ..a most egregious one at that. It never ceases to amaze me not only the way people throw their imaginary authority around, but that people submit to it?

      If you have better things to do than read some housewife’s blog — that’s entirely understandable! But if you WANT to read it but are afraid of repercussions….

      People can rest-assured, that there is NO consequence at all for reading this blog, if they choose — I have no idea who you are. The blog records numbers of views, but certainly does NOT identify viewers. It does tell me which country they come from, and, of course most of them are in the U.S. Are you, by chance, that Belgian reader?


  3. concernedparentalso

    I hear you, i think your are wright. Thats why that man is running again. When things were getting heated there were listening. When
    Mr. Tapley spoke that night he shook the room.Thats why he told
    everybody he was getting done. Now that everybody is in there corner hes coming back for the kill. Should have kept going and went
    to every meeting and kept-ed up the pressure. I really think thats why the tapleys backed out, the lack of support. Thats to bad he was a person that they listen too.


    • I’ve been going to meetings right along… Did the Tapley’s “..back out”? Were they going to run for the Board? They do have a great deal of support for their input. I was there the night Mr. Tapley spoke, and not only did the room shake? He demonstrated an astute understanding of the issue at hand.

      Who is in “their corner”? According to our poll, no one.

      We do need to stay engaged, to keep up the pressure.


  4. concernedparentalso

    I don’t think the Tapleys backed out. The reason i say that, they were
    one of the parents that went to the school, and once again they had
    every body’s attention. I no that first hand, i was in the hall when they come in. I think it was about the new math and the fact of the teacher couldn’t get it either. I believe there moving forward with out
    the lack of support. I did find out one more thing about the i pads.Do
    you guys no that at SACHS the prince-able would not allow them.
    They said that there kids was going to have HANDS ON. Send that
    crap down to Katahdin, there you go. And by the way MALONE and
    the BOARD are winning, they have our money and we don’t. I believe
    that the Katahdin people should not go to SACHS for any kind of meetings. They should overwhelm the meetings at Katahdin. You
    no what i mean, [standing room only]. With the Tapleys in the front
    row. LOL. Knowles would have a nervous break down. LOL


    • We need more well-informed, engaged parents like the Tapleys, and they certainly have a great deal of support, especially among our readers. More meetings like the one you describe are a good idea, too — as many as possible! They are very important, even though these things are never “won” on the spot — they are “won” behind the scenes, and sometimes that frustrates people. I hope it does not discourage you!

      I think SACS has iPads, too, though I’m told that the experts in the room all pushed for computers with keyboards and were outvoted 1 to 0…. iPads have educational value, but student readers of “Timbered Classrooms” report that they aren’t good at all for typing long passages. They simply do not function well as word processors and should not be used as such. The decision on how to use them should lie with the teacher; not the principal, Supt. or Bob Marzano — ugh, don’t get me started….

      We may not like it, but, for the time being anyway, Katahdin and SA are governed by one body. Decisions about Katahdin are made in Dyer Brook and decisions about SA are made in Sherman Station…. I will continue to attend meetings wherever decisions are being made.

      Our readers paint such a clear picture of what they want. They want their money to go to the school their children attend; to stay in town. They also want their children to stay in town.

      Thank you for staying engaged. When you do what you can, however small you think it is, you will be amazed at what you can accomplish. Malone only “wins” if you give up!


  5. concernedparentalso

    Well im glad i stopped and read these comments. I heard they were
    getting good, so i had to take a peak.I will have to say i agree with
    the parents. We did have them on the run, Malone was even calling
    the town managers and trying to get them to way in and get this going. I was not there at that meeting that Mr Tapley sounded off. But i heard that he in deed had there attention.I don’t no him, but i
    no of him. What you see is what you get. He tells it how it is.As far
    as the i pads, i no for a fact thats is true. They did say to the kids, we
    are going to do hands on. My son nos a girl in sachs, she told him.
    The vote you are talking about is smoke and mirrors. Just like talking
    about Katahdin at sachs, and sacks at Katahdin at the board meetings. Its to make us run so we get fed up with it. They are inching forward because of the quit way every thing is.You need to be loud, and use there words against them. You need them to feel
    the same way our kids feel. DOWN, NO HOPE, ROBBED OF THERE SCHOOL YEARS. I do no this, if you took last years class
    of 2013 and gave them books, paper, and no.2 pencil, and said take
    your finals, with out i pads, computers, calculators,and phones. They
    would still be here. Thats whats really sad. So maybe there on to something at sachs.


    • I was at the meeting where Mr. Tapley spoke — he was very articulate. Others have done the same, and need to continue. Some meetings will be more well-attended than others but don’t let that discourage you. Keep going. No one is giving up here and things behind the scenes are vital too.


  6. I want to say the iPads are not useful. Typing is a big issue, and they are used for games, snap chatting, photos, etc. the kids are the ones being short changed and then expected to shut up and like it. The foolish things going on at KMHS are ridiculous. Where is the common sense?! I don’t believe there is anything better at SACS. I think the powers that be might like us to think that. Malone has divided us, and that is a man with an agenda. We have to get people vocal and to the meetings or we are going to be run over by this big bully. Kids are unhappy, communication is poor, and their priorities are totally wrong. I would ask them who are they here to serve, they might say the kids, I say themselves.


    • There is plenty of dissatisfaction on the SA side of the district, too, with this administration…

      You echo what the experts have written about iPads; they have educational value WITH the guidance of a master teacher, but they are NOT a word processing tool. Our own, in-house experts wanted computers for the kids but were outvoted one to nothing by an administration without even a fraction of their expertise.

      Administrators use divisive language to deflect your attention from the divisive things they are trying to do — in this case, liquidate the infrastructure of one community to enrich the other to the detriment of students and taxpayers. You will be accused of selfishness, parochialism, ignorance, fear of change…. …and even the most polite rebuttal will be answered with huffy cries for “civility”. Don’t be intimidated. These techniques don’t work in any substantial way, especially when it is shown the research is on your side.

      There certainly are deep philosophical differences here about what it means to serve kids. ….what they deserve in terms of respect. I had never seen less child-centered priorities until last Spring, cutting teachers first…. “For the kids” is tacked on to every faculty cut and management hire. It is as meaningless as the word “rigorous” (another post). I am so grateful for the teachers who are consummate professionals with whom our kids find comfort as well as intellectual growth. The teaching profession is, indeed, that — a profession and one for which I have the highest regard.


  7. concernedparentalso

    I guess im wrong in thinking things are going to change. Just when
    we start getting back into it, another hammer falls. Not just in this
    joke of a ministration, but with in the teachers that seem to see only
    what they want. Has this really taken over. This is what some of us
    are dealing with. ….class rooms completely out of con-troll. This is the real world at our school.


  8. You are not wrong at all — things will change, but it takes more time and effort…. We all deserve faster solutions I know, but you must write letters, meet with people individually and speak to the Board in public… … Build relationships, and go to forums, and connect to the press — do one or all but be part of the solution that takes all of these things You cannot throw up your hands and give up.

    (Please do not take offense by my cutting out a bit of your comment. I left your thoughts intact, of course. There are laws governing our ability to post serious allegations against individuals but there are channels to address your concerns that I hope you utilize. )


  9. concernedparentalso

    This is just whats happens at the school. [cover up the truth]
    thats why parents dont come to meetings. They dont think nothing is wrong. Thats why malone is laughing, nobody tells the truth. Just a
    bunch of words that dont mean nothing. You dont have to answer, im
    out of here.


    • I will reply, for our other readers — it is entirely up to you if you read it or not:

      I “cover up” nothing. Your allegations of criminal behavior belong in a police station. If and when they are proven, and the accused’s presumption of innocence is satisfied….. Then we are allowed to publish them.

      Parents know well of the problems, are doing everything in their power to solve them. You can help them or criticize or do nothing at all. Again, the choice is yours.


  10. The Real issue is the lack of control and the cost going up. Do you know that the cost for our schools in Sherman alone has gone up from 270,352.00 a year in 2004 to an estimated 525,000.00 for the upcoming year that means in 10 years the cost has almost doubled. And with this increase we now have less students, less teachers, less control, more issues with mainstreaming children that maybe shouldn’t even be allowed in school for behavior issues. Why do the children that are just trying to do well in school, behave and get a future for themselves have to suffer. All of the concerns listed here are valid. Everything that probably was edited is more than just the start of problems. It is hard for the kids to even know now what might happen next in the school. Locked bathrooms because of inappropriate behavior. Math being taught by watching the teacher on ipads instead of the teacher teaching it to them that day. Guidance teachers giving our kids lectures on the responsibility of becoming too physically close too soon when they are in middle school. And during all of this the administration just keeps getting bigger. Parents are frustrated, town people are frustrated and a lot of us have just decided that we need to watch over just our kids. It is a matter of save ours or join the fight and be targeted. Some of us are making the hard choice do we pull our kids and muddle through with home schooling or do we let them go to the school and worry what they might run into next. It is that tough choice we are facing while we also worry if we will be able to put food on the table for them at supper after paying our house taxes. School should be an environment where kids feel safe and where the parents feel safe sending them not an environment that costs so much for so little results and general unsafe conditions.


    • Thank you for this; for articulating so concisely what people are thinking, feeling and saying around the community.

      Thank you especially for the numbers, here. I have a pretty clear understanding of the forces pulling money away from our children, away from taxpayers, out of our schools and even communities, but specifics are difficult for me. I am not surprised AT ALL. Have you read the post, “Humble Wisdom”? https://atimberedchoir.wordpress.com/2013/12/28/humble-wisdom/ “….it’s fun to spend other people’s money…”?

      It is well-documented that district consolidation closes schools and grows administration, here and elsewhere. Before schools are closed, though, they are starved, because, of course, bastions of excellence are harder to liquidate and turn into more “other people’s money” to spend on everything and anything but children.

      Why on Earth would fewer children and fewer teachers cost MORE? The Common Core was designed to make money for its creators; YOUR money sucked out of YOUR school, community and state See: .

      “Why do the children that are just trying to do well in school, behave and get a future for themselves have to suffer?” Spot on! Of course the administration did not cause the behavioral problems, but is exacerbating them. Discipline should teach; punishment should be swift, profound and should include a reconciliation process that includes the parents. How do you build a culture of respect, without treating children with respect? You don’t:(

      I love your point about parents seeking individual solutions — of course we all must do that first and foremost; tend to our children’s immediate needs. But everyone is connected, and I’m sure you know that parents can do both. If we all turn inward, these issues will darken our doorstep, bankrupt our families with high taxes and our communities with pillage…. Fear of retaliation is all too real here, as people have shared their experiences with me. I respect every parent’s decision, to put their children first. That’s why this blog is here. Anonymity will be preserved. (Seriously — even from me. I have no idea who you are, or how to find out if I did want to know.) I’d rather be hated for what I am than loved for what I’m not.

      It’s up to parents to create an environment where kids feel safe and parents feel safe sending them; that directs money like a laser to priorities that not only communities have demanded but the research has shown is best for kids. NONE of which make Wall Street one. thin. dime!

      Please, please consider joining us as an author, at any time. Just say the word and I’ll get you started. Our readers would appreciate your perspective a great deal, and, of course, you can do so anonymously if you choose.

      Thank you.


  11. This is sad, put the fire out again, freedom of speech, shot down.
    trying to get parents going, Edited, Going to the meeting gagged.
    making malones day yea!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! on the same
    side, ya right. pushing one agenda YES. real issues, don’t talk


    • If you think Timbered Classrooms is “making” the Superintendent’s “day”….. Why don’t you ask him, then?

      I left the commenter’s point, that he/she believes there is criminal activity taking place. Ethics and the law compelled me to remove the identifying information — try taking such an allegation to a newspaper and see if they print names without corroboration!

      I “gagged” no one and stand by my editing. I used a scalpel where others would have used an ax — and banned the user. To my mind THAT would be unethical. I take the 1st Amendment very seriously, and host this blog to give people a voice who don’t feel they have one; who feel “gagged” at meetings.

      All are welcome.


  12. This kind of blindness is what there hoping for


    • So enlighten us. Go to the police with the specific allegation I refused to print. When it has been substantiated via due process (read: the Fourth Amendment) …then, and only then will I inform our readers or permit you to do so.

      If you want to make unsubstantiated claims of criminal activity against an individual I cannot stop you — it’s a big world and there are ways you can do that and take the risk of a lawsuit on to yourself. I won’t let you use OUR community site to slander individuals.


  13. Thank you very much for clearing up the issues at hand. I hope that
    Timber classrooms has a very bright future. I hope the committee hits a home run on the 10th of feb.


  14. I hope we can get many parents out to that meeting. There is power in numbers. Unfortunately what they hope for is that not many will show up, then the agenda can be pushed forward. I am frustrated, yet hopeful. We, the parents, need to keep pushing, we have the right to speak up on our children’s behalf. If we don’t advocate for them, who will, certainly not Malone. He doesn’t care anything about them. They want to keep pushing parents out of the equation today in the public school. If parents and teachers stand together, that would really make a difference. Unfortunately, I think Malone is a very divisive man, who seeks to divide both sides and then conquer. I want my kids to stay at Katahdin, and I want them to have a good education. It is possible if we stand for what we believe.


  15. concernedparentalso

    Your welcome, but unfortunately i can stand with you guys, because
    of the obvious reasons. As you can see i am a very out spoken person that speaks nothing but the truth no matter who it involves.
    I got that from being raise by my grand parents, allot of years ago.
    You no [OLD SCHOOL]. We do share allot of the same concerns.
    But mine goes deeper. See the ISSUES i spoke of are very TRUE.
    but its not behave r problems with most of the kids. Its being LIED
    to by this ministration. These kids see that they don’t care. I no thats
    not an accuse. But now days its enough to set it off. I stand by myself that way your committee stands a chance. Im in there face
    every time my kids are getting messed up, and i will continue. But
    believe me when i say, you have to be loud an firm. Good luck.


  16. That is so sad that because of the heavyhandedness of this administration. When did it become bad for people to stand up for their kids and expect a quality education and to be treated fairly and listened too.


  17. concernedparentalso

    I hear you, but this day and age,,,,,, well what your trying to achieve
    a person like me could do more damage then good. When im by myself it works great. { theirs no reins ]. There no law suits there is
    no police,,,, because i have facts and the truth on my side. But i will
    be watching just like all of us.


    • Oh, there is a great deal of good you can do, and I hope you will be at Katahdin Elementary School with bells on.

      Many people aren’t comfortable with public speaking, and that is why I am encouraged by the format of this opportunity. You can contribute quietly, on paper, if you like and help create the strong mandate on which the rest of us can build.

      There are other things too: write to the newspaper, or call the press and encourage coverage of meetings; get to know your Board representative and build bridges there.

      You will NOT “do damage” at all. We all have to leave names out until claims are investigated by proper authorities, but that doesn’t obscure our points about problems.

      You have contributed here, on “Timbered Classrooms”! I hope you will continue, here and in other ways. Don’t just watch….


  18. concernedparentalso

    Lisa is a very good person, and what shes trying to do is above and
    beyond the call of duty. Timber Classrooms is a very good tool. But
    even President Lincoln needed a army.So this is what i have to say.
    Sound off here, let every body no what your thinking. Good place to practice the real thoughts. Talk, let known, sound out, i cant here you. Lets go. Lets hit them with every thing we have. Lets fire up the
    quit people and get them going. All it takes is a phone call to your friends and say,,,,,,,,,, have you checked out timber classrooms they
    are FIRED UP ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, LETS GO


    • Thank you for that.

      “Timbered Classrooms” is here for the betterment of our children’s education and accountability for our taxpayers, but it cannot stand alone.

      We do need “an army” on many “fronts” working toward excellence.

      “Timbered Classrooms” is here to support the real work.


  19. concernedparentalso

    I just wish people would take it to heart!!!!!!!!!!!


  20. concernedparentalso

    OK this is an a example, the town over paid the school last year at the tax payers money of the amount of $50,000 . Because the state was not suppose to kick in any money, but they did. The town asked him to take it off this years budget, he says no. Now the town has to hire a lawyer, to get our money back. This is the kind of person he is.This is what we are dealing with. You think hes listening. HE HAS TO GO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


  21. concernedparentalso

    thats wright, there agenda has to go


  22. concernedparentalso

    Theirs allot that has to change, the BOARD, MALONE, the tax payers MONEY, and the way our CHILDREN are heard.


  23. Concernedparentalso i have been reading every thing that you have wrote.To me your looking at this with common sense and old school
    ways. I would like to hear more from you on all the matters at hand.
    Will you show at the meeting on the 10th of feb.


  24. concernedparentalso

    Im thinking about it, but like i have said before, i could do more damage than good. I am considering just on the fact of wanting to hear where every body’s head is.


  25. concernedparentalso

    I am going to plan on it. Thanks Lisa


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