An organization whose research is often used by backers of school choice and school voucher legislation gives Missouri public high schools a poor grade on preparing students for college. The Manhattan Institute for Policy Research says Missouri’s public high schools graduate only 74 percent of their students and only 32 percent of the students are ready for college when they graduate. The institute won’t say what it considers acceptable rates to be. Researcher Greg Forster says greater accountability for schools is one solutlion – and that means school choice. But the head of the Missouri Council of School Administrators, Gary Sharpe, says Forster is painting with too broad a brush. He says Missouri schools have become increasingly accountable, and are now more accountable than ever. School choice? Sharp says studies show parents change schools as much for their own convenience, not for the quality of education their children get.
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