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Defining Failing Schools and Why Low Achieving Schools Aren’t Alone

Jefferson County Public Schools’ lowest-performing schools took a hit this week. First, Kentucky Education Commissioner Terry Holliday described the district's practices in a Courier-Journal article as “academic genocide.”

Holliday then defended that phrase later in the week in an interview with the Courier-Journal editorial board. But some educators are wondering if the 18 Jefferson County public schools officially labeled  “persistently low-achieving”--now called priority schools--are really the district's worst schools.University of Louisville professor Craig Hochbein has co-authored an article along with Jeffersontown High School principal Marty Pollio and U of L student Amanda Mitchell that says the PLA label relies too heavily on the adequate yearly progress, or AYP, schools are expected to meet. Hochbein discusses with WFPL’s Devin Katayama how the federally mandated metrics under the No Child Left Behind Act are bias against high schools and he raises the question of whether school resources are being used for the best purposes.This conversation is part of The Next Louisville education project.WFPL's Devin Katayama talks with University of Louisville professor Craig Hochbein.

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