David: Well, I am from the Northwest and am well aware of the challenges faced in Portland Public Schools. However, in all my recent research, it appears to me that your district is NOT the only district facing these issues. So, to be blunt, the excuses don't fly. As a former teacher, ANYTIME test scores fell this dramatically, curriculum and teaching methods were ALWAYS examined.
I'm sure you are aware that schools/districts in New York had these same problems with Investigations and lower test scores. As a result, excuses were dispensed with and NEW CURRICULUM WAS ADOPTED. This has happened in many other states across the country.