What do our One Newark Reports tell us?

March 9, 2014

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My doctoral student Mark Weber and I have just completed our second report evaluating the impact of the proposed One Newark plan on Newark schools, teachers and the students they serve. In this post, I will try to provide a condensed summary of our findings and the connections between the two reports. In our first […]

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The False Markets of Market Based Reforms

March 1, 2014

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I’ve not spent a great deal of time talking about “corporate reform,” “privatization” or “market based reform,” mainly because I find these labels unproductive and oversimplified. Most of which occurs in our public and private sectors (also a simplification) and provision of public and private goods and services is far more nuanced – well beyond […]

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Clarifications on Charter Rent & Equitable Portfolio Management

March 1, 2014

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Dianne Ravitch today titled her post on my recent Think Tank Review to suggest that I agree with Mayor Bill de Blasio that some charter schools can afford to pay rent. This statement while true as worded, misses the bigger point – how to create a system of equitable opportunities for New York City school […]

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Rightsize this! When simple, ignorant solutions & simulations just don’t cut it

February 7, 2014

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Recently, TB Fordham Institute released a report by AIR researcher Michael Hansen on “Rightsizing” the classroom. Hansen based his analysis on data from the state of North Carolina, using distributions of teacher value added scores and class sizes to derive conclusions about how “great” teachers could be given larger classes, thus reducing students exposed to […]

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Friday Finance 101: NY State’s Formula for Failure

February 7, 2014

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Below is an excerpt from a recent series of policy briefs on NY State school funding Statewide Policy Brief with NYC Supplement: BBaker.NYPolicyBrief_NYC 50 Biggest Funding Gaps Supplement: 50 Biggest Aid Gaps 2013-14_15_FINAL Note: The above briefs received financial support from the New York State Association for Small City School Districts. All opinions are my […]

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The Average of Noise is not Signal, It’s Junk! More on NJ SGPs

February 3, 2014

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I explained in my previous post that New Jersey’s school aggregate growth percentile measures are as correlated with things they shouldn’t be (average performance level and low income concentrations) as they are with themselves over time.  That is, while they seem relatively stable – correlation around .60 – it would appear that much of that […]

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An Update on New Jersey’s SGPs: Year 2 – Still not valid!

January 31, 2014

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I have spent much time criticizing New Jersey’s Student Growth Percentile measures over the past few years, both conceptually and statistically. So why stop now. We have been told over and over again by the Commissioner and his minions that New Jersey’s SGPs take fully into account student backgrounds by accounting for each student’s initial […]

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