The district improved overall math and reading scores on the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment tests -- by wide margins in some grades. In reading, math or both tests in various grades, the district also decreased the percentage of bottom-scoring students, increased the percentage of top-scoring students and narrowed the racial achievement gap. (P-G, Joe Smydo)
This is certainly welcome news.
The district did not provide test results for individual schools; officials said they would be provided to principals Aug. 4 and to the public after that.
No one can begrudge the Comet its opportunity to review and interpret the data before joining in the huzzahs.
There will also be a degree of grousing about "teaching to the test". We remember taking similar exams in our day -- the California Achievement Tests (CAT) or the Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) tests. Students were keenly aware that the exams were strictly a measure for our teachers and administrators -- in other words, a fine day for sniffing glue.
Hopefully things have changed. Be sure to alert us when SAT scores go up, or better yet, when dropout rates decline.
Roosevelt introduced students and faculty members on stage to talk about improvements in their schools, and the session ended with a standing ovation for Roosevelt. (Trib, Tim Puko)
There'll be no living with him after this.
"As this job slips behind for days, or months, or even years, the price of the casino will double -- and that's if the casino is built on its current location. The cost will be even more at another location," said Mr. Keating, who added the price of steel and other construction materials have jumped considerably in recent months. (P-G, Tom Barnes)
So the question you've got to ask yourself is: do I feel lucky? Well, do ya? Punk?
"If things go OK and they open and demand is relatively good and there's a better economy and there are no delays in construction, then they could fare OK," Mr. Parmelee said.
Who's up for Wheeling Island?
State Gaming Control Board Chairwoman Mary D. Colins said she didn't feel "intimidated or threatened" by a 60-second phone call from state Rep. Dwight Evans, who stressed the importance of continued black ownership in a planned Pittsburgh casino. (P-G, Tom Barnes)
They're intent on making Pittsburgh have this argument full-on if it's the last thing they do, aren't they?
A proposed $72 million debt refinancing by Pittsburgh, expected to net $3 million in savings, is facing one city councilman's high-noon deadline today and a Wednesday showdown in City Council over how to spend any windfall. (P-G, Rich Lord)
The P-G is trying to tell you that debt refinancing can be interesting somehow. Be a sport and play along.
"Council has been informed from the very, very beginning of this process," said city Finance Director Scott Kunka. Some members, including Mr. Peduto, were notified July 14. "It's very disingenuous for Councilman Peduto to say he hasn't been informed.
Now that is interesting. Usually the administration responds to this kind of criticism with something more along the lines of, "Well, maybe next time. The dog ate our homework. We know exactly what we're doing. Just sign this before the city explodes."
There is a side-issue brewing over how to invest the $3 million. It may be a ruse to suggest first that there will actually be a $3 million, and that it cannot become $4 million or $5 million if we were to shop around outside the contributor database.
The Pittsburgh Housing Authority board voted yesterday to... (P-G, Rich Lord)
Can it vote on things without a council member present? We mean, if somebody had a problem with a decision or a contract, and was inclined to get litigious, what then?
A playground quarrel has created tension between the Islamic Center of Pittsburgh and its neighbors in the Schenley Farms section of Oakland, where residents fear that the squeals of kids could disrupt the quiet nights they savor.
Center officials and residents faced off before the city's zoning board of adjustment yesterday, and the three-member panel has about 12 weeks to decide whether to grant the code exceptions the playground would need. (P-G, Rich Lord)
We surmise that this article comprises a civics lesson on what the Zoning Board of Adjustment is supposed to contribute to society.
Ye Olde Lamare Advertising LEDe was finally to have come before the ZBA yesterday, but earlier in the week it was delayed again until September. In related news, George Bush is still preparing NASA for its manned mission to Mars.
Pittsburgh's Urban Redevelopment Authority will lose its finance director, marking the second time in three months that a top, long-serving official has chosen to leave the authority. (Trib, Jeremy Boren)
When it rains, it pours.
Ravenstahl said he doesn't think the state Ethics Commission's investigation of suspended Executive Director Pat Ford is behind the recent departures.
Gotta figure we're going to hear something on that score sometime today.