In last week’s newspaper, teacher Rob Haggerty from Ponoka Composite High School (PCHS) was interviewed regarding the Fraser Institute’s recent high school ranking report. The article noted, “Haggerty believes success can be measured in different ways and it should be measured by a student’s goals and abilities.” The article was an attempt to describe the merits of PCHS despite their low ranking in the Fraser Report.
The article noted one Grade 12 student was the first in his family to graduate. I was at the graduation ceremony when this was announced and I sincerely congratulate this student for his achievement. However, Mr. Haggerty is then quoted as saying, “I was willing to applaud that much higher and louder than one of my students who got five out of five on the AP exam.”
The student he is referring to may have been my son, as there were only two students who achieved this score at PCHS. My son also graduated this year and was an advanced placement (AP) student. The AP program is an international academically advanced high school curriculum in which specific courses are taught at a higher level and an international exam determines a student’s ranking among all students taking the exam. My son took a World History AP course, worked very hard and scored five out of five, the highest possible score. Because of this he is able to submit this course for first-year university credit.
I feel that it is somewhat irresponsible of Mr. Haggerty to publically boost one student’s success while minimizing another’s. I find his remarks quite perplexing. If he believes success can be measured in different ways, that’s fine, but then why is my son’s success less important?