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There are a number of questions that remain unanswered in discussions about the "achievement gap" in Minnesota. A commentary by Ted Kolderie in the Minneapolis Star Tribune in June 2013.

At the Charter School Student Summit held in St. Paul in December 2004, students discussed, in small groups, their experiences attending Minnesota chartered schools. This document summarizes their discussions.

Under NCLB school quality is indicated by the percentage of students that tests reveal as proficient in various subject areas at a given time. School improvement is the rate at which this percentage increases. The problem is that equating percentage-proficient with school quality cannot withstand serious scientific scrutiny.

A former district official and college president argues for re-setting objectives and assessments for both college and high school. "We have fallen into the trap of valuing what we measure," he says, "rather than measuring what we value". Education is about critical thinking, analytical reasoning and problem-solving.

Culture is activity of thought, and receptiveness to beauty. Scraps of information have nothing to do with it. We should aim at producing people who possess both culture and expert knowledge in some special direction. Their knowledge will give them ground to start from, and their culture will lead them as deep as philosophy and as high as art.