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Michelle Rhee's Testing Legacy: An Open Question

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Matthew, i'm glad to hear that about the NAEP sample. Also, that just strengthens your argument.

Matt, Thanks for such a handy a clear description. As I recall, the only discernable improvements in NAEP 8th grade Reading, which I see as the most valuable metric, was in the top decile. That lends more support for your evidence that gentrification may be the explanation, but regardless, no improvements were made in the learning necessary for struggling students to make it in high school. Secondly, I'd like your thoughts on the NAEP sample. If my district (which is 90% poor) was judged on a tested sample which was 70 something percent low income, it would look like we were working miracles. I'm no expert, but before NCLB, it looked like the D.C. NAEP samples were more respresentative of their population.

Thanks much for this thoughtful and in-depth review Matthew. A value-added analysis certainly would provide additional clarity to this question and help us get an estimate of how much progress students are making. These estimates can provide powerful and accurate insight at the district and school levels, rather than pure attainment looks at the data which we know are heavily confounded by economic condition. Appreciate your article here. Jason Glass Columbus OH

Thanks for your comment, John. I am confident that the NAEP sample is representative of the DCPS student population, both now and in the past. It is possible, however, that DCPS students are, as a group, becoming less reflective of all school-aged children in the District. Selection into charter schools would probably explain most of this trend, as well as, perhaps, a change in who opts for area private schools. Thanks again, MD

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