Graduation rates and ESSA

The Oregon Graduation Rates data for 2015-16 were just released. The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) will be identifying low- performing schools based on (District-wide) graduation rates. Any school district with a graduation rate of under 67 percent will be considered low-performing. Then Oregon must intervene to force an improvement plan.

An example is the Eagle Point School District I live in. Our graduation rate when the current administration arrived in 2007-08 was 75.38 percent. Since then the graduation rates have fallen and remained consistently one of the lowest in Oregon:

2008-09(62.0 percent), 2009-10(58.04 percent), 2010-11(60.86 percent), 2011-12(60.06 percent),

2012-13(62.18 percent), 2013-14(56.10 percent), 2014-15(62.94 percent)

The just released rates show a 64.79 percent graduation rate for all Eagle Point High School students in School District 9 for 2015-16. This includes the main high school and all alternative high school students and programs.

ESSA also identifies low-performing schools by freshmen on track to graduate. Freshmen on track to graduate from all D9 EPHS programs is 65.7 percent. Oregon’s state average is 83.5 percent.

Accountability for low-performing schools has been minimal. Hopefully, ESSA and HB 2420 (allowing parent petitions) will require more accountability.

J. Mannenbach

Eagle Point

Really small people

As we travel to the land of Lilliput through our Lilliputian Oregon Democratic legislators, Congressmen Schrader and DeFazio, we learn that these are really small people. They must be men of small ideas and accomplishments.

These Lilliputians violated 240 years of the peaceful transfer of power on Jan. 20, in a spiteful boycott of the inauguration. How small can you get?

They are Lilliputian small of course. They can’t get over the fact they lost the election, it must be somebody else’s fault. It’s the Russians! It can’t be that they ran a flawed candidate with a lot of baggage who ran a lethargic campaign and did not connect with working America.

It can't be us! We can't have introspection! It has to be someone else ...

Leland Topham

Medford

He is the biggest loser

It is a fact that Trump lost the popular vote by almost 3 million, a historical record, and his vanity cannot take it. He disparages anyone who points this out, and directs his staff to blame the media for misreporting the truth. Same goes for the women's march the day after the inauguration, which outnumbered his inauguration crowd by tens of thousands.

Now, just weeks into his presidency, it is obvious this ignorant phony is a megalomaniac, and thinks himself above the rule of law and standard norms of behavior and diplomatic protocol. He has appointed a Cabinet of incompetent neophytes who are notable only in that they stridently oppose the missions of the agencies they have been appointed to. His executive orders do not address real-world problems but only appease his lunatic base. Meanwhile, he is a shill for the proffering of the inhumane, regressive, Republican agenda.

The question is whether there are any rational, objective Republicans left in Congress who will for once put the good of the country before the furthering of their ideological puritanism via this fraudulent fool. The future is not bright, and I am with John Lewis. The resistance has been inspiring so far.

Robert Mengis

Medford