Wait, Seriously?

These are the kind of stories that warm your heart at this time of year:

Howard announced Thursday that his Ryan Howard Family Foundation would be donating athletic sportswear valued at $1.15 million to the school district of Philadelphia. Fifty-seven high schools will benefit from the donation by receiving athletic footwear and uniforms that match the schools’ colors, and four middle schools in the district will also receive athletic shoes.

What an incredible investment in those students!

But can generous acts like this undo what some students have experienced? I recently had the following conversation with a middle schooler:

Me: Why doesn’t your school have a softball team if you have enough girls interested?

Middle Schooler: Our vice principal said that our test scores weren’t good enough and that we need to study more.

Me: Wait, seriously?

Middle Schooler: Yeah, if we get better test scores, then we might be able to have one next year.

Is this really where public education is?