"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Low $$ = Low Scores; High $$ = High Scores

No one can doubt that high stakes testing is an effective sorting tool to make sure that those who have, get more, and those who don't, won't. Here in the New York Times today is just another demonstration of the morally-bankrupt con game that has become the centerpiece of an education reform policy built on a rhetoric of sanctimonious platitudes, while consciously designed to reproduce social and economic inequity:
Published: October 12, 2006

The first results of a new set of New York State math exams show about two-thirds of students performing at grade level, with striking disparities between rich and poor school districts, according to scores released yesterday.

The share of students at grade level in affluent districts was more than twice as big as in impoverished urban districts.

The use of new tests, adopted to meet the federal No Child Left Behind law’s requirements for tracking annual progress, and changes in the state math standards made it impossible to compare the results released yesterday, from 2005-6, with those from previous years. But the state education commissioner, Richard P. Mills, said there was clearly no improvement. . . .

Imagine that. How long?

1 comment:

  1. I teach math in an affluent Virginia county. If any of my wealthy students have a math struggle, their families hire private tutors to tackle the issue one-on-one in a quick and prompt manner. Poorer families do not have that luxury and as a result the gap between those students in higher level courses widens greatly.

    My wealthy students also have the luxury to stagger their courses by paying tuition for summer classes so that they don't have heavy courseloads which allow them to concentrate on tough courses during the year & take lighter ones in the summer. Again my poorer students do not have this luxury.