Super search Decision on schools boss could come tonight

Published 12:05 pm Friday, July 23, 2010

Teaching what’s needed to pass standardized tests that partially determine funding for the Vicksburg Warren School District must continue, the four finalists for superintendents said, but all agreed that along the way students must also have a heaping dose of instruction in critical-thinking skills.

“We live in the time of accountability,” said Dr. Elizabeth Swinford of Baton Rouge, La. “A lot of weight is placed on tests and test scores. It’s a sign of the times.”

Still, Swinford and the other candidates, Dr. Marvin Jeter of Tulsa, Okla., Jerry O. Payne of Pine Grove, La., and Dr. Roy “Cole” Pugh of Fort Worth, Texas, said 21st century students need to be problem-solvers capable of analyzing information and working together.

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“Being able to do well on the test is just the beginning point,” said Pugh. “That’s not the ultimate.”