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LETTER: Don’t forget this when talking about education

In his Feb. 6 column (“This is how you fix education in Nevada), Victor Joecks advocates school choice alternatives to public schools. These promising approaches are best considered in the greater context of all factors that impact learning outcomes, some beyond the control of teachers and the Clark County School District.

A key determinant of learning outcomes, even in private schools, is parental engagement or lack thereof. Effective learning outcomes are a “team sport,” and better outcomes are more likely if the parents value education, are themselves educated, and are available to assist with homework. Regrettably, some well-meaning parents are too busy working and commuting to provide effective parenting.

Furthermore, other extraneous factors such as poor nutritional, sleep and motivational habits do not distinguish between public, private and at-home schooling.

These extraneous factors help explain how CCSD national rankings remain low even with few teachers ever receiving poor performance evaluations. Paradox solved. Remediating these extraneous factors will position both the CCSD and school choice alternatives to achieve their full potential.

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