Pragmatism or Idealism?

As a strategist this issue seems to surface every time a strategic plan gets written.

If your goals are realistic, let’s say your graduation rate is currently 75% and you think in the next four years you can get it to 85% with some hard work. Does it make sense to say your plan is to increase the graduation rate to 85% by 2024, leaving 15% of the 4th year cohort over the next four years in the dust? Or is it better to set the bar at 100%, knowing that in the short run you will likely fail? Is 100% graduation ever possible?

It is. I wrote the book about a school district in Kentucky that faces all the problems of school systems throughout the country. And yet they have consistently graduated all of their seniors every year.

Ever since Roger Cook got the job as superintendent at Taylor County Schools and asked the board to adopt a zero dropouts policy, every student has graduated on time. This is not a story about social promotion, but a well-researched and documented story of seasoned educators working hard for each and every student.

Since there was little information about this success story, I chose to write Every Child Every Day to tell their story. Since its publication, this book  has been cited in many academic papers and research journals.