Yesterday, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution (AJC) took a huge swipe at the credibility of public school educators all across the nation.
Based on its own research of state testing results from all 50 states and somewhere between 69,000 to 70,000 individual public schools, the newspaper has identified 200 school districts across the nation where the pattern of scores on state tests allegedly resembles the pattern of scores in the Atlanta school system.
That’s an ominous situation. In Atlanta, widespread test cheating was actually confirmed. Consequences are now being levied. Teachers have been fired, and the superintendent was shown the door, as well.
While I am still trying to figure out exactly how the paper conducted its analysis, the AJC on line database includes dozens of Kentucky schools and districts in its listing of unusual test score results.
I’m not going to list any of those school systems at this time, however, as I have reservations about the AJC methodology and assumptions. You can look up schools and districts on the AJC potential cheaters radar scope for yourself here.
Stay tuned on this one.
Due to the amazing breadth of the findings – with many states involved – I am sure educators and researchers all around the nation are going to be examining both the methodology used by the newspaper and the schools and districts that popped up with unusual and statistically highly unlikely test score histories.
Still, without question the AJC has thrown down a huge gauntlet in front of educators around the nation. And, it is troubling that the newspaper says the analysis it used for its new nationwide study is similar to the one used in 2009 that pointed to the now-confirmed cheating scandal in Atlanta.
So, I suspect the ‘fight’s on’ as they say in the fighter pilot world.
The ‘next round’ is going to be fired at ajc.com on Tuesday at 11:00 AM, when a live chat will take place. The web might get loaded down by all of the interested parties who are likely to log in.