Friday, August 5, 2016

CURMUDGUCATION: More Moskowitz Baloney

CURMUDGUCATION: More Moskowitz Baloney:
More Moskowitz Baloney

Eva Moskowitz was given some space by her buddies at the New York Post to run one more advertisement for her Success Academies, this time featuring a twisty interpretation of recently released test scores.

She actually starts from an accurate place, noting that the mayor and chancellor are not really entitled to victory laps about the test results because, as State Ed Honcho Elia already noted, this year's test results are not comparable to last year's. It's a different test, taken under different conditions (most notably, a non-time-limit condition for this year's test). The Big Standardized Test in New York was arguably massaged not to improve its ability to collect useful data, but to make it more politically palatable.

After Moskowitz notes that test conditions make "apples-to-apples comparisons with prior years impossible," she then proceeds to make apples-to-oranges to tout the results at Success Academy. In Moskowitz's worldl, it is, literally, only okay for charter schools to make comparisons between this year and last years test results. 

Charter scores went up this year by a big chunk. That could mean any number of things, including that charters are getting really good at gaming the test and at identifying the kind of students who will help them do it. It's a good example of how folks can play with statistics. For instance, Moskowitz can say it this way:

The benefits to minority students of receiving a charter-school education are particularly remarkable. An African-American student is more than twice as likely to be proficient in math if he attends a charter school rather than a district school (48.8% vs. 20%), and a Hispanic student is nearly twice as likely (46.9% vs. 24.4%).

But we could also read that data to mean that an African-American student who is proficient in math has twice as much chance to be admitted by a charter school. That data don't show that the charters are good at anything except selecting students. When Moskowoitz takes over a NY 
CURMUDGUCATION: More Moskowitz Baloney:

Latest News and Comment from Education