Education Department nominee Betsy DeVos likes online charter schools. In fact, she has a hard time saying anything bad about them. When Senator Patty Murray asked her why these schools perform so poorly, DeVos listed several virtual academies that had, she said, “four-year cohort graduation rates” at or above 90 percent. That sounds pretty impressive, until you find out what “four-year cohort graduation rates” are. According to K12 Inc., the source of DeVos information, this phrase refers to “the graduation rate of continuously enrolled high school students – those who enrolled in ninth grade and remained enrolled until twelfth grade.” In other words, it’s the graduation rate for all of the kids who stick around long enough to graduate. The graduation rate for these virtual school for all of those who enter the system seems to be about half that. This doesn’t inspire confidence in either the schools or the nominee.
Our Muslim ban is not fairing well. It seems that the State Department is backing the “so-called judge” in Seattle and the whole thing seems headed for the history books as a flatulent flash-in-the-pan. Perhaps this will leave more time for the country to focus on other pressing matters, such as the millions of imaginary voters or the new border wall. On the other hand, it may be that none of Trump’s executive orders are legal anyway since they were signed without proper procedure. Kind of makes you wish the poor guy could just figure out whom to threaten with a law suit.