"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Thursday, June 15, 2017

KIPP Memphis: Negative Growth and Lots of "flight risks"

Based on a new study of the segregated KIPP schools and their effects on test scores, KIPP Memphis is in the basement.  One of KIPP's Memphis schools has shut its doors this year, and four remain, even as they struggle against the earned KIPP reputation as the "Kids in Prison Program." 

A new CEO (the third in 3 years) has been brought in from Oakland, CA to try to staunch the bleeding.  Her name is Kendra Ferguson, and in an interview with the corporate education online rag, Chalkbeat, Kendra reminds us of why KIPP has a reputation as a penal business model, rather than as a humane educational model (my bolds):

[Chalkbeat] Maintaining or growing enrollment has been a challenge for many Memphis schools, and KIPP hasn’t been an exception. How are you addressing that?

[Ferguson] At the end of each school year, we have folks spending more time looking at who’s a flight risk and why they’re thinking of leaving. Is there assistance we can provide? Is there a transportation issue? … What is it that’s causing folks to want to leave?
It is not at all surprising that KIPP views its students as captives: what is surprising is that they would use this language in public.  

Meanwhile, the billionaires and hedge funders continue their unerring support for the incarceration and cultural sterilization of the children of the poor.


  1. Anonymous2:10 PM

    My elementary school in Newark is comprised of three buildings. The fourth floor of the main building has been closed by order of OSHA due to roof damage and collapsing ceilings. An annex housing prekindergarten classes was evacuated because of rat infestation. Lead contamination was previously identified in numerous water outlets. Despite the serious and dangerous conditions prevailing in many public schools, New Jersey politicians such as Christie and Booker have the fortitude to generously expend tax payer dollars on private forays into providing segregative, discriminatory and classist educational outlets primarily in our poorest neighborhoods. Their so called civil rights crusade is a travesty of justice. History will paint our generation in unflattering hues.

    Abigail Shure

  2. Interesting choice of worlds. Of late, the term "flight risk" has been central to the discussion of human capital management at Hewlett Packard, a company that has been at the forefront of promoting digital learning. This article may be of interest: http://analytics-magazine.org/predictive-analytics-the-privacy-pickle-hewlett-packards-prediction-of-employee-behavior/.