The July 4th Knucklehead Marathon Part Twenty-One
Our twenty-first winner today is Orange County School Superintendant Ron Blocker. He gets the award for the following.
Orange County administrators have long wanted to curtail transfers out of their F-rated schools. This year, they thought they had figured out a way to do it.Blocker admits to t he mistake. Ironic a school administration that can't count to two. No wonder Florida schools are often so pitiful. Orange County School Superintendant Ron Blocker is today's twenty-first Knucklehead of the Day.
Trouble is, they were wrong.
After misinterpreting a state rule, Orange administrators started telling parents they could not transfer their children out of Evans and Oak Ridge high schools -- a move that would have represented a dramatic shift in Florida's "school choice" policy.
Both schools earned F grades from the state Friday when Florida's annual A-to-F school report card was released -- the third failing grade for each school since 2004.
Orange Superintendent Ron Blocker said he and his staff thought a no-transfer policy was an option this year because of a vote taken by the state Board of Education in March.
"The person you're talking to is mistaken," said Education Commissioner Jeanine Blomberg on Monday when asked by the Orlando Sentinel about Orange's actions.
Blocker responded: "If we made a mistake, we obviously have to rethink what we're doing."
Since Florida started grading schools in 1999, students at schools that have more than one F in a four-year span have been offered transfers to schools with better grades.
Blomberg said that practice remains true this year, and that someone from the Education Department would be in contact with Orange to make sure the rule was followed.