The Chatter: MSNBC Morning Joe apologizes to McConnell plus bigger bang for buck school districts

09/18/2012 10:13 AM

One of U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell’s most often quoted remark has been his comment in the fall of 2010 that his top political priority was to ensure President Obama becomes a one term president.

The quote came up Monday on MSNBC’s Morning Joe. And while talking about the context of McConnell’s quote with the Washington Post’s Bob Woodward, host Joe Scarborough apologized to McConnell for misquoting him.

Scarborough said on the show “McConnell went on to say — and it’s just never been reported — McConnell went on to say, but if he changes, I want to work with him, and basically that’s the attitude of if the guy will meet us halfway” (at :58).

Bluegrass Institute report show best use of taxpayer dollars in school districts

A new education report from the free market think tank Bluegrass Institute for Public Policy Solutions says Kentucky students can receive a better education in spite of current economic challenges with a little innovation.

““Bang for the Buck 2012: How efficient are Kentucky’s schools?” report”: ranks the Bluegrass State’s school districts, instead of by individual schools, on their efficiency ratio of ACT test scores to per-pupil spending.

The author of the report, Richard G. Innes, suggests the answer to providing a quality education is not just more tax dollars, but in making better use of available resources.

The study identifies four “Diamond in the Rough” school districts that are giving taxpayers above-average bang for their education bucks despite above-average poverty rates.

Those districts, Graves County, Eminence Independent in Henry County, LaRue County and Mason County, each posted efficiency scores for their 2011 data at least 10 percent better than the state average even though their student lunch eligibility rates equal or exceed the state average. They also surpassed the average ACT Composite score for all districts by at least half a point and posted better than average high school graduation rates in 2010, as well.

(Pure Politics’ Don Weber reported on innovations in Eminence on Friday’s program.)

The common positives found in the districts were using credible data to establish high expectations, emphasizing building and maintaining strong and respectful relationships with students and parents and between teachers and administrators and using digital learning to open up new opportunities to maximize the value of time and financial resources.


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