A+ Gets a C-

A+ Schools, a group ostensibly concerned with improving education in Pittsburgh public schools, is very disturbed by the high turnover rate of teachers in the "most vulnerable" schools in the City. Having discovered the turnover is significantly higher than in the less vulnerable schools, A+ recommends the District take steps to make the more vulnerable schools places where teachers would like to be.

What does that mean? Does it mean, in large part, having safe schools with manageable discipline problems where there is at least a chance of instruction taking place? If that is the case then we would suggest the A+ group rethink their recommendation. If history is any guide trying to deliver the desired school environment is almost certainly a futile undertaking. Why not another approach? Why not recommend providing students and parents who want to use them a scholarship or voucher to attend a non-public school of their choice? Schools where discipline can be enforced as opposed to public schools where excessive political considerations prevent principals and teachers from creating an environment conducive to learning.

If the A+ is truly concerned about the quality of education, they should quit playing enabler for the public school system. If they want to spend a lifetime pretending they can push the schools in the right direction while wasting hundreds of millions of dollars and denying a large share of Pittsburgh’s children a chance to get a good education all they need do is keep issuing studies and recommendations like the one discussed above.