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Controversy is swirling in education circles after results of national test scores show charter schools, considered an alternative to public schools in the No Child Left Behind act, may not be what they are cracked up to be.

When Microsoft introduced its Tablet PCs two years ago, and promised a revolution in education technology, expectations were high. But revolutions aren't spontaneous, and two years later K-12 adoption of tablets has been minimal, held back by high prices and low functionality.

OK, your district has just approved the purchase of new technology that will greatly enhance the classroom-learning environment. Now, the big question is: How do you make sure your teachers are actually going to use the equipment?

As superintendents and school districts face the challenges of mandated testing and the pressure to improve test scores, there's a danger we may develop a very short-sighted approach to education--an approach that could deprive students of experiences they need to succeed as adults in our global society.

The statistics are startling. Only about 70 percent of all U.S. students graduate from high school and only 32 percent of them are college-ready. And roughly about 70 percent of all new jobs require at least some degree of post-secondary education, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

One textbook was once good for all students. Many teachers, with no guidelines, just winged their lessons. And administrators knew some students struggled with reading, but couldn't pinpoint if the problem was comprehension or vocabulary.

Four years ago, West Clermont, Ohio, a suburb of Cincinnati, had two traditional high schools with a district graduation rate of about 76 percent and problems with student attendance and behavior.

Pity superintendent Gary Prest. Every school building in his district, Bloomington (Minn.) Public Schools, needed renovations.