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Interpreting Achievement Gaps In New Jersey And Beyond


In order to be valid, any scientific study must be designed to control all the variables except the one being tested. The use of standardized achievement tests controls almost no variables. Even within a single district, economics, ethnic diversity, family structure and other factors may significantly change in only a few years. Changes in standardized tests may be valuable in determining the success of the philosophy of a single district as it attempts directional changes to meet demographic changes, but to use a single factor out of many others that are not even identified, much less controlled, challenges the credibility of the conclusions of teacher effectiveness based on student achievement tests.


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