I only looked at this because I saw Mike Ramone’s high school picture…. Amazingly he has changed so little.

But the more I read, the more I saw obfuscation. So here I am to point it out.

Of Delaware public high school graduates entering an in-state college or university, 42 percent will begin their post-secondary education behind their peers, according to the state’s 2016 College Success Report released today….

You may first exclaim: “oh, that’s terrible.”  But is it?  For you see Delaware has far more of its high school graduates going to college than do many of its peers. So if you open doors to everyone and have programs enabling everyone to attend, aren’t you going to be bringing in a considerable segment of population who wouldn’t go to college otherwise?

Of course… and primarily these will be those who originally didn’t plan on going to college and prepare for it, but changed their mind due to the abounding opportunities.

delaware college participation rates


And what is nice is that WE DO HAVE remedial courses.  In the past, even at highly selective colleges who competed over those receiving 1400 and over on the SAT (2 part). the drop out rate was 1 in 4 for the first year alone. That was average… Many college freshman orientations began with these words…. “Look to the person on your left, now on your right, in front of you, and behind you.  Odds are one of them won’t be here by next semester……”

But today we are beating those odds by offering remedial classes.  Which from society’s point of having better educated citizens, IS a good thing…

Nearly 60% of Delaware’s high school graduates enroll in college the following year.  Nearly 60% of Delawares college graduates get their diploma in 4 years. Twenty-four more percent of each class, graduates by 6 years for a total graduation of 73.6%……

Delaware college completion rates



We ARE, number 1.

As backup corroboration, let’s look at Massachusetts.  The Massachusetts’s miracle is often touted by reformers as the results they are trying to achieve.

Massachusetts College Participation Rate


Massachusetts has as slightly higher high-school-to-college enrollment rate than Delaware.  42.2% versus Delaware’s 39.1%.  As one would expect by watering down the talent entering college from the public school system, there would be a weaker rate of completion….

Massachusetts College Completion Rate


So where as we might want to improve for improvement’s sake, we should beware and not trust anyone who tries to use this data to make changes to what is working so remarkably well.

And what is the exact level at which these reports cite as crossing from success to failure?  If you look at each school’s report enclosed in the state report, you can see the designation listed as such:

“Historically, students who are not prepared for college-level courses will require at least one remedial class their first year of college.”

So you see:  almost 50 percent of our students entering college do so without one remedial course. In days of old, 25% of those  who today are remedialized, would quit in their first semester; the other 25% would have struggled and continued…  it was sink or swim; there were no remedial classes then.  You either made the grade, or you didn’t.  With what we clearly know is poverty’s influence on ones educational ability, having a very high participation rate coupled with a very high remedial rate and finishing with a very high college graduation rate because of it, is the best any state can do to make sure as many of its children as possible receive a college diploma….

(We could drastically  cut our remedial rate in one year by not offering remedial courses at all in our colleges)  From cross referencing the charts, it is obvious some poorer states do this.

Embedded in the state report, I see this brand new trend developing… Here it is, in this sentence…

POLYTECH Principal Jason Peel credited the dedication of his school’s math teachers, who have “embraced Common Core and the need for more rigorous math instruction.”

At the end of that sentence….I said: “You got some brown stuff on your lip, there buddy; better wipe it off!” Then I looked at what he continued to say…..

The school stopped offering pure remedial math in ninth grade and instead enrolled the students in Algebra I with an extra period of supports. Year-long geometry and Algebra II courses were created for struggling students with extra support classes (double periods). Enrichment period supports also were instituted during the day for struggling math students, Peel said.   

Wait!  That‘s not Common Core!… This crap is Common Core!…. That is what we call “Good Teaching”!…

What was just said in list form:

  • School provided extra levels of supports in grade nine.
  • Created year long courses in Geometry and Algebra II  for struggling students with extra supports (double periods)..
  • Extra enrichment period supports also were instituted during the day for struggling math students


None of that is Common Core.  Instead, it is the opposite which is:

  • Applying additional resources (time and money) to struggling students.
  • Applying additional resources (time and money) to struggling students.
  • Applying additional resources (time and money) to struggling students…


Which is exactly the kavipsian solution to solving educational’s woes once listed here three years ago…

  • It involves closer one on one teaching, the opposite of original Common Core.
  • It involves smaller groups. the opposite of original Common Core.
  • It involves dedicated human teaching professionals to provide follow-up, and less computerized babysitting than the original Common Core.
  • It involves hiring more teachers; not less than the original Common Core.
  • It involves providing more time and resources to failing students than did Common Core. (Remember Dave Coleman saying too much attention was baby-ing our teeny little children?)


So we’ve gone so far that public Common Core supporters (which one has to be in this day of Stasi DOE secret police) have no idea of what Common Core is… or was.

Which means, we won.  That was a nice caveat to see..

That said, in each school’s report the goals continue…. (keep in mind Common Core math curriculum STOPPED at Algebra 1 in 8th Grade; one of the points tipping many of us educated souls to work energetically towards its defeat)…

4 Key (post Common Core) Recommendations to Eliminate Remediation:

# 1: Provide targeted interventions prior to 11th grade for students not meeting college-readiness benchmarks. Recommendation

#2: Prepare students to enter the 12th grade ready to succeed in Pre-Calculus or Calculus.Recommendation

# 3: Prepare students to enter the 12th grade ready to succeed in college-level English.Recommendation

# 4: Design an accessible and equitable K-12 system that ensures all students can succeed in college-level courses by 12th grade. Recommendation.

I’m loving being right.  Goodbye old Common Core.  Hello Common Core which requires smaller class sizes. one on one interaction with professional teachers, and classes that are challenging because the material is challenging, not because someone tried to make it sound as pompous and confusing as possible….

We more than ever need a new test (not the Smarter Balanced) which adequately tests this new version of “Common Core” and not one that twists the English language into a Gordian Knot. We need a test that matches the results we actually are in the process of achieving on the ground through direct human intervention and additional financial resources; not one which discredits all students, teachers and support systems just to make it easier to allow executives manipulation of evidence to allow easier execution of personal vendettas.

Which is all the Smarter Balance is…..