Making (Up) the Grade

This HISD program teaches a big lesson: Don't question what the district touts

HISD administrators now issue blanket rejections of that report, but haven't re-examined the points raised or reviewed the competency of statistics supplied by the company.

Given Paige's push to use contractors in many areas of HISD operations, the sharp differences over CEP's performance raise questions about the district's desire to objectively evaluate the privatized programs it touts. Paige himself talks eagerly about making this program his showpiece on a grander scale.

"We are proud of the success of our unique partnership with CEP, and we look forward to putting this program on the national stage," he said in a press release.

Kellow thinks that the administration will ignore the academic inadequacies of CEP because, if nothing more, the program keeps bad kids out of the regular classrooms.

"It's a nice big rug to sweep things under," Kellow says. "And it's an attractive rug. What more could you want if you're interested in tucking away kids?"

E-mail Wendy Grossman at wendy.grossman@houstonpress.com.

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