Excellence in education

What truly constitutes “excellence” in our education? I believe it’s readying our students for whatever they face, in whatever path they choose after graduation. Whether they choose to go straight to work; to a community college; a 4-year school; or to continue on to advanced degrees, the basic education they receive and attitudes they are taught about education are what will form their basis for success in the future.

There are many qualitative and quantitative ways to evaluate how our students are doing. A few weeks ago, I had a great talk with one of our elementary principals. He explained how they evaluate students at every step of the way, and how they work to ensure needs are met for each student, each year. It was very impressive, and sounded like exactly the approach a truly “excellent” school district would take.

We do know from a variety of test scores in high school that higher-achieving students appear to be well-prepared for life after Milford. Our SAT, ACT and AP scores are excellent. Our graduation rate is also continuing to increase, which is wonderful. Clearly, our educational staff, from the elementary level on up to the administration, is doing a great job in preparing students for meeting the needs of “test taking” for graduation & college.

But do we know what is happening to our kids after they graduate? Are we talking to them and their families six months, a year, five years down the road, to see how well they were prepared for college, how they fared in their first jobs, if they were able to meet their goals? How do we compare to students from other districts? This is one method that could be an extremely helpful measure of what the true worth of a Milford education is.

We know we are Excellent (with Distinction) according to state standards; now let’s find additional ways to make sure we are truly providing an excellent introduction to the world for our students.

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