It's the computers' fault. So said JPS School Board President Beneta Burt Friday evening at an impromptu press conference when she attempted to explain why JPS had an F rating. You simply can't make this up. Ms. Burt (9:48 in the video) said:
About those ratings. Just know that if you look across the state, you will see the number of schools that received much lower grades. We already said as we were going through the town hall meetings, we said we expected there to be a downgrade because we didn't expect, we were hoping we'd do better, but we, as other schools expected downgrade because of the changing of the tests that kids have done. Last year was the first time that children had to take the test completely on computers as opposed to paper and pencil. And while kids really know how to use Iphones, sometimes they don't know how to drag content from one place to the other on a computer and together with the time process adds to that anxiety so there were some trepidations among the kids and some downgrading as well.
It is sad to see a limited intellect in action. Hinds County, Rankin County, Madison County, Pearl, and Clinton all managed to keep their grades. Ms. Burt has been the Defender of the JPS Faith. Dr. Gray can do no wrong where she is concerned. She fought the longest and loudest to keep him on board. There is no excuse she is incapable of manufacturing nor anyone who is safe from her blame game. Her statements Friday night show exactly what is wrong with Jackson Public Schools.
The video begins with the School Board announcing it is going into executive session. Dr. Gray is sitting in his usual spot. The board returned from executive session (1:40) but Dr. Gray was absent. Now you see him, now you don't. Ms. Burt announced he would resign but the final date of employment and compensation was not determined at the meeting. Ms. Burt then took questions from the media (5:15).