Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The Latest lie from Seattle Schools 66% are making gains on state tests.

Recently Elementary school report cards showed 66% of 5th graders district-wide making gains on both State Math and Reading tests from grade 4. Incredibly it was the same gain on each test for 8th graders 66% from grade 6. Additionally 66% of 8th Grade English language learners were reported making gains on the state reading test since grade 6.
This is the 66% lie, how long will it live?


Limited English Reading scores

8th Grade Reading
Year District State Diff
2005-06 WASL 24.20% 27.50% -3.30%
2006-07 WASL 21.50% 22.80% -1.30%
2007-08 WASL 24.10% 22.70% 1.40%
2008-09 WASL 29.00% 21.10% 7.90%
2009-10 MSP 11.00% 14.00% -3.00%

7th Grade Reading
Year District State Diff
2004-05 WASL 20.60% 23.10% -2.50%
2005-06 WASL 15.40% 16.50% -1.10%
2006-07 WASL 22.00% 20.00% 2.00%
2007-08 WASL 21.60% 13.00% 8.60%
2008-09 WASL 15.60% 12.30% 3.30%
2009-10 MSP 14.50% 13.30% 1.20%

6th Grade Reading
Year District State Diff
2005-06 WASL 18.40% 19.10% -0.70%
2006-07 WASL 24.50% 21.20% 3.30%
2007-08 WASL 23.90% 25.70% -1.80%
2008-09 WASL 36.20% 30.50% 5.70%
2009-10 MSP 12.40% 14.20% -1.80%

The Limited English speaking student
Reading Cohort for grade 8 2010
Percent passing
6th grade in 2008 23.90%
8th grade in 2010 11.00%

The Cohort for grade 8 2010
6th -1.80%
7th 3.30%
8th -3.00%

Change from 6th to 8th a differential net change of -1.20%

2009 to 2010 DROP
8th grade -10.90%

2009 to 2010 DROP
7th grade -2.10%

2009 to 2010 DROP
6th grade -7.50%

So why were 66% of Limited English Speaking students credited with making gains on OSPI reading tests from grade 6 to 8?

Because the District set up a bogus statistical measure and called it GAINS.

Although interventions for struggling students should be a core mission of the District, the District failed to provide interventions stating outside funding had not been procured. The District continues to fail those it should be serving by not using core instructional materials and practices proven to be effective with struggling learners.

Is lying to cover this up a sound strategy?

Well it has worked pretty well for the Superintendent so far.

Note the 4th to 5th grade gains for all students in math and reading are bogus as well.
Differentials for Reading down by 1.1% and in Math by 1.30%

The 6th to 8th grade gains for all students in math and reading are better than the others in these 5 comparison groups reported by the District, as these two groups made gains on OSPI tests as these two went up instead of down. Differential for Reading up by 1.70% and Math up by 6.30%.

So It could be that the district was only lying on 4 out of 5 reports.


iplaymathgames said...

As Mark Twain said, "There are lies, damn lies and statistics."

Nice work on the blog!

Scrawny Kayaker said...

OT: Can we get an NSF grant to retrain SPS teachers to use the algorithms familiar to most parents?

"It’s important for teachers to understand that a student’s parents might use different measurement units or solve a division problem in a different way than is typically done in [strike]the United States[/strike] Discovery Math."

Quote (altered) from: