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October 4, 2005 Extra Credit
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October 4, 2005

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"The Real Secret Of This School Is That They Have High Expectations"

The following article appeared in today’s Hamilton [Ohio] Journal-News (10-4):

"After returning from a trip to China on Saturday, Susan Tave Zelman, Ohio Department of Education superintendent of public instruction, said she was ‘worried about our American students.’ A visit to the New Miami Local School District on Monday turned that concern into optimism, she said….

"In the last five years, the school district has climbed 14 indicators on the state report card and has gone from a rating of academic emergency to effective. In the latest round of the local state report card, students met 18 of 23 performance indicators….

"‘The real secret of this [New Miami] school is that they have high expectations for what they want their students to know and be able to do,’ [Zelman] said. ‘They hold everybody accountable for results. The teachers and the administration work so closely together and they have formed a professional learning community. This district shows that geography and socio-economic status is not destiny. If you don’t have a lot of money you could still learn and still achieve.’…

"Last month Darla Marburger, deputy assistant secretary for policy with the U.S. Department of Education’s office of elementary and secondary education…toured the elementary school.

"Marburger said that New Miami can serve as a model for the rest of the country for the academic improvements students made under the federal No Child Left Behind standards….

"[New Miami Superintendent Bud] Bierly said he attributes the dramatic improvement in New Miami school test scores to a caring community of parents, school partners and teachers linked by their belief ‘that all children can learn.’"

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Last Modified: 01/31/2008