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

Monday, August 16, 2010

Bloomberg-Klein Achievement Gap Miracle Another Mirage

 Anyone can make an honest mistake, but this ain't one of them.  The Bloomberg Team knew exactly what was happening with the manipulations of cut scores in New York, and they continued to spread their propaganda nonetheless.  The lies worked long enough to assure Prince Mike has another term as Dictator of Schools.  From the NY Times:
Two years ago, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and his schools chancellor, Joel I. Klein, testified before Congress about the city’s impressive progress in closing the gulf in performance between minority and white children. The gains were historic, all but unheard of in recent decades.

“Over the past six years, we’ve done everything possible to narrow the achievement gap — and we have,” Mr. Bloomberg testified. “In some cases, we’ve reduced it by half.”

“We are closing the shameful achievement gap faster than ever,” the mayor said again in 2009, as city reading scores — now acknowledged as the height of a test score bubble — showed nearly 70 percent of children had met state standards.

When results from the 2010 tests, which state officials said presented a more accurate portrayal of students’ abilities, were released last month, they came as a blow to the legacy of the mayor and the chancellor, as passing rates dropped by more than 25 percentage points on most tests. But the most painful part might well have been the evaporation of one of their signature accomplishments: the closing of the racial achievement gap.. . . .
. . . .
New York City’s progress in closing its achievement gap on those tests drew national attention as a possible model for other urban school districts. It won praise from President George W. Bush as evidence that No Child Left Behind was working. In 2007, the city won a prestigious urban education prize from the Broad Foundation, which cited the city’s progress in narrowing the racial achievement gap.

But the latest state math and English tests show that the proficiency gap between minority and white students has returned to about the same level as when the mayor arrived. In 2002, 31 percent of black students were considered proficient in math, for example, while 65 percent of white students met that standard.

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