Norview HS among nation’s best

According to PilotOnline, Norfolk’s Norview High School has been included as one of America’s Best High Schools, based on rankings done by U.S. News & World Report.

Forty-one Virginia schools were recognized but no others in South Hampton Roads.

And, of course, Norview is home to Virginia’s Teacher of the Year, Tommy Smigiel.

Congratulations all around!

6 thoughts on “Norview HS among nation’s best

  1. Pilot OnLine (Oct. 29, 2007) reports on schools that are identified as “dropout factories”, high schools and vocational schools that held on to 60 percent or less of their students from freshman to senior year over three years, from 2004 to 2006:

    There are about 1,700 regular or vocational high schools nationwide that fit that description, according to an analysis of Education Department data conducted by Johns Hopkins for The Associated Press. That’s 12 percent of all such schools, no more than a decade ago but no less, either.

    Five of these High Schools are in Norfolk.

    Granby High School

    Booker T Washington High School

    Maury High School

    Lake Taylor High School

    **Norview High School **

  2. Well, did you read how USN&WR came up with their rankings?

    I think it’s pretty amazing that despite the issues with the dropout rate, Norview ranked while no other Hampton Roads school did.

    What does that say about the other schools in the area?

  3. Thanks for the post Vivian! Everyone should be proud of the wonderful things that are accomplished each day by the staff and students at Norview High.

    Yes my high school was listed in the Johns Hopkins study as a “dropout factory,” a term coined by the lead researcher, for high schools in which no more than 60% of the student who start as freshman graduate. Although I did not agree with all parts of the study because of how the data was collected, it did bring attention to an issue that I am passionate about and feel needs to be addressed at an even greater level. Last year, a Time magazine report highlighted some disturbing facts, one million American students drop out of school every year—that is one every nine seconds. This is not a problem just in urban schools. This is not a problem facing just Norfolk schools. This is a national problem.

    Anyone who collects data would understand that the Johns’ Hopkins study was flawed. If you analyze the schools that made that list, you would see that almost all of them came from urban areas with a high transient population. Already this year I have lost 6 students who moved to another state. According to that study, all 6 of those students would have been counted as a dropout. That would be 5% of the students I teach. By the end of the year, I will lose about 10 more to transfers. We also have more and more kids choosing to get a GED, the same route as Congresswoman Thelma Drake. Those students are counted as dropouts as well.

    This study also failed to mention one other key to a student’s success: parents. The report never mentioned the parent’s responsibility in making sure their child is educated. Parental involvement in schools is at an all time low. On parent teacher conference day this year, out of 142 students, only 27 of my parents showed. Of those 27 I would say less than 50% were an actual parents. Most of my students live with grandparents, aunts, uncles and family friends. It is unfair to put all of the blame on the school system.

    I think that people should be very careful when they criticize Norfolk Public Schools, especially those with political ambitions. If those same people who criticized our school system took time to volunteer, tutor our students or act as mentors, then maybe they would see what we face everyday. I am saddened when a school in Norfolk wins an award or receives a ranking such as this, and the first thing a community leader does is turn it something negative. Shame on you.

  4. Tommy, parental involvement is the biggest factor in the success or failure of a child’s education. When parents don’t get involved, it takes the efforts such as yours and the many teachers who take on roles that deserve all our thanks. Your assumption that I am not involved in helping to solve the dropout problem is dead wrong. I would like to talk to you about a group that has been working together for the last six months to provide mentors for these children, and the infrastructure which would provide havens for children in the inner city. My comments were not meant to be negative. My comments were to prevent this polyanna attitude of our citizens to accept only the good and sweep the bad under the carpet. My apologies if there was a misunderstanding.

Comments are closed.