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A broken system

Posted: December 17, 2008 5:00 a.m.
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Dear Editor: The system is broken. Why do I say that? Using statistical tools, we know that less than 5 percent (or .3 percent, or in the case of 6 Sigma, .3 per million) failures means that the error is random. However, greater than 5 percent means that the system is failing. So when 2 out of our 3 high schools in Newton County fail AYP, we conclude that it means there is a system failure. When 41 percent of schools fail to achieve Annual Yearly Progress (AYP), we conclude that is a system failure. What do you do about a system failure? You use a systems change tool like the Future Search Conference to re-structure and orient the system. Extending this analysis, we would also conclude that the entire Georgia education system is failing and needs overhauling. Where will we start to fix the failure?

Interestingly, this same analysis would suggest our economy, employment, and healthcare systems are all broken at the moment. Again, the solution is the same.

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