It's teacher hunting season!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Education Week challenges schoolratings; Daily News publicizes assertions: administrators intimidating teachers to pass (failing) math students

Education Week writes "Questions Raised on New York Test System's Reliability"
"High number of schools receiving A or B in city a red flag, critics argue" September 29, 2009
By Erik W. Robelen

The recent news that 97 percent of New York City public schools got an A or B under the district’s grading system might be seen as reason for celebration, but critics suggest the grades hold little value and highlight the need to revisit the state assessment system.

The results, they say, reveal far more about flaws in the city’s so-called “progress reports” —and the state testing regime that largely drives them—than they do about the quality of education in the 1.1 million-student district.

Eighty-four percent of the city’s 1,058 public elementary and middle schools received an A on the city’s report cards this year, compared with 38 percent in 2008, while 13 percent received a B, city...

(Alas, the site wants you to subscribe in order to read remainder of story.)
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From the Daily News (not the New York Times):
"PS 147 in Queens probed for promoting failing students: School math doesn't add up in records" October 7, 2009
(We could say that this is part of Bloomberg/Klein misrepresentation of student performance under B/K regime..)
Flunked math and couldn't do the work.

Teachers say administrators at Public School 147 in Cambria Heights doctored failing grades into passing ones and bumped seventh-graders up to eighth grade.

"I was told that no students were going to summer school this year, so everyone had to pass," math teacher Darren Johnson said.

Copies of student evaluation forms obtained by the Daily News show two math teachers at PS 147 failed nine seventh-graders with a final score of 55. But copies of three of the students' report cards - dated two weeks later - show a final grade of 65.

Those students fell "far below standards in function and algebra concepts," the report cards say. Report cards for the other students could not be obtained.

An Education Department spokeswoman said neither the principal nor agency officials would comment because the investigation is ongoing.

Some of the students who flunked rarely turned in homework assignments, teachers said, and could not perform basic algebra problems. Most did not pass the state math exams. One student was late 52 days.

"It didn't make sense to me to pass kids who failed almost every single test," Johnson, 29, said.

The tenured six-year veteran was given an unsatisfactory rating for the year by school Principal Anne Cohen.

Johnson, who resigned last month, says an assistant principal told him PS 147 could not pay for summer school.

The Education Department pays for summer school only for children who get the lowest possible score on state exams. Schools must dip into their budgets to pay for extra help for other kids, including those who failed a class.

All schools took a 5% hit to their budgets this year.

Read more:

Reports such as this help explain the cold truth that tens of thousands of New York City students are being pushed along -SOCIAL PROMOTION LIVES ON in reality. This explains why you encounter majorities of students in ninth or tenth grade that cannot perform multiplication operations without counting on their fingers (apparently, indicating that they have not mastered fourth or fifth grade mathematics competency).

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