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

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Are His Lips Moving?

We know what that means. He also has a war to tell you about that we are winning. From Ed Week:

Is the No Child Left Behind Act working?

President Bush says it is, pointing to student-achievement results from a single subsection of the National Assessment of Educational Progress and tentative Reading First data. But the evidence available to support his claim is questionable.

“Fourth graders are reading better,” the president said during a March 2 visit to a school in New Albany, Ind. “They’ve made more progress in five years than the previous 28 years combined.”

In mathematics, he said, elementary and middle school students “earned the highest scores in the history of the test.”

The data Mr. Bush cited at that event are from just the “long-term trend” NAEP in reading and math, researchers say. All available data, they add, show modest improvements that can’t be attributed to the 5-year-old law. Instead, progress in achievement is more likely a continuation of trends that predate the law.

“There’s not any evidence that shows anything has changed,” said Daniel M. Koretz, a professor of education at Harvard University’s graduate school of education. . . .

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