I find this a rather refreshing stand on principles.

The Palo Alto Public School District declined to be included in this year’s Newsweek listing of the country’s “best” high schools as determined by Jay Mathews’ “challenge” index.

While some individual schools have dropped out before, this is first time for an entire district.

In declining to participate in Newsweek magazine’s annual ranking of high schools, Palo Alto says it hopes to strike a blow against shallowness, student stress and unwanted publicity.

Said Marilyn Cook, associate superintendent of the district: “It’s a very simplistic premise that the quality of a school can be measured by the number of AP tests students take.”

It’s nice to see at least a few educators refusing to participate in this farce. I wish our system would do the same, but I doubt it will happen.

Now can we talk about Mathews’ other efforts to canonize the AP curriculum?

Side note: So far the Washington Post, which owns Newsweek and for whom Mathews is a staff writer, doesn’t seem to be reporting this story from the AP. It will be interesting so see if or how they do.