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

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

Segregating Suburbia: A Princeton Story

Others around me have for some time been raising concerns about the emergence of boutique, suburban charter schools. Until now, I’ve largely blown off those concerns in part as I’ve questioned just how much sorting a charter school can achieve in a relatively homogeneous suburban area. Suburbs have their own unique portfolio of schools.  OneContinue reading “Segregating Suburbia: A Princeton Story”

Newark Charter Update: A few new graphs & musings

It’s been a while since I’ve written anything about New Jersey Charter schools, so I figured I throw a few new graphs and tables out there. In the not too distant past, I’ve explained: That Newark charter schools in particular, persist in having an overall cream-skimming effect in Newark, creating demographic advantage for themselves andContinue reading “Newark Charter Update: A few new graphs & musings”

Rebutting (again) the Persistent Flow of Disinformation on VAM, SGP and Teacher Evaluation

This post is in response to testimony overheard from recent presentations to the New Jersey State Board of Education. For background and more thorough explanations of issues pertaining to the use of Value-added Models and Student Growth Percentiles please see the following two sources: Baker, B.D., Oluwole, J., Green, P.C. III (2013) The legal consequencesContinue reading “Rebutting (again) the Persistent Flow of Disinformation on VAM, SGP and Teacher Evaluation”

The Dramatic Retreat from Funding Equity in New Jersey: Evidence from the Census Fiscal Survey

I have explained in numerous previous posts how New Jersey is among those states that operates a reasonably progressive state school finance system, that New Jersey, throughout the 1990s and early 2000s put the effort into disrupting the relationship between local community income and school spending. And, during that period, New Jersey’s low income studentsContinue reading “The Dramatic Retreat from Funding Equity in New Jersey: Evidence from the Census Fiscal Survey”

Friday AM Graphs: Just how biased are NJ’s Growth Percentile Measures (school level)?

New Jersey finally released the data set of its school level growth percentile metrics. I’ve been harping on a few points on this blog this week. SGP data here: http://education.state.nj.us/pr/database.html Enrollment data here: http://www.nj.gov/education/data/enr/enr12/stat_doc.htm First, that the commissioner’s characterization that the growth percentiles necessarily fully take into account student background is a completely bogus andContinue reading “Friday AM Graphs: Just how biased are NJ’s Growth Percentile Measures (school level)?”

On Misrepresenting (Gates) MET to Advance State Policy Agendas

In my previous  post I chastised state officials for their blatant mischaracterization of metrics to be employed in teacher evaluation. This raised (in twitter conversation) the issue of the frequent misrepresentation of findings from the Gates Foundation Measures of Effective Teaching Project (or MET). Policymakers frequently invoke the Gates MET findings as providing broad basedContinue reading “On Misrepresenting (Gates) MET to Advance State Policy Agendas”

Who will be held responsible when state officials are factually wrong? On Statistics & Teacher Evaluation

While I fully understand that state education agencies are fast becoming propaganda machines, I’m increasingly concerned with how far this will go.  Yes, under NCLB, state education agencies concocted completely wrongheaded school classification schemes that had little or nothing to do with actual school quality, and in rare cases, used those policies to enforce substantiveContinue reading “Who will be held responsible when state officials are factually wrong? On Statistics & Teacher Evaluation”

Civics 101: School Finance Formulas & the Limits of Executive Authority

This post addresses a peculiar ongoing power grab in New Jersey involving the state school finance formula. The balance of power between state legislatures and the executive branch varies widely across states, but this New Jersey example may prove illustrative for others as well.  This post may make more sense if you take the timeContinue reading “Civics 101: School Finance Formulas & the Limits of Executive Authority”

Twisted Truths & Dubious Policies: Comments on the NJDOE/Cerf School Funding Report

Yesterday, we were blessed with the release of yet another manifesto (as reported here on NJ Spotlight) from what has become the New Jersey Department of Reformy Propaganda.  To be fair, it has become increasingly clear of late, that this is simply the new model for State Education Agencies (see NYSED Propaganda Here), with theContinue reading “Twisted Truths & Dubious Policies: Comments on the NJDOE/Cerf School Funding Report”