More evidence Kentucky’s larger than average high school graduation rates might not be a good thing

I’ve recently been writing about a highly problematic report from Johns Hopkins University titled “For All Kids, How Kentucky is Closing the High School Graduation Gap for Low-Income Students.” The Hopkins report has many problems, but the biggest issue is fundamental. The report assumes that diplomas awarded in different states require the same level of…

More talk of education reform won’t work – again – if educators don’t buy in

As Kentucky’s education leaders debate education reforms again, a thought-provoking article in the Denver Post is worth consideration. In “If educators don’t buy in, education reform fails” author Dick Hilker points to an obvious history of remarkable resistance within the nation’s education system to making substantial changes. Although there have been massive efforts at education…

Johns Hopkins gets honest about altering federal data – sort of

It took a lot of questioning and independent research, but the authors of a recent report from Johns Hopkins University called “For All Kids, How Kentucky is Closing the High School Graduation Gap for Low-Income Students” finally admitted – only after we collected some rather compelling evidence – that they altered high school graduation rate…

Are Henderson County students being short-changed in math preparation?

Do Common Core State Standards Play a Role? News articles about 2016 ACT performance in individual school districts are starting to appear, and a comment from the Henderson Gleaner’s coverage of the Henderson County Public School District’s scores caught my eye. Per the Gleaner: “While Algebra II is a graduation requirement, most Henderson students don’t…

2016 ACT: KY Public School Only Achievement Gaps

We took a look last Wednesday at Kentucky’s ACT college entrance test achievement gaps computed across all the state’s students from public, private and home schools combined. The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) also released some data about the Kentucky public school graduates’ 2016 ACT performance, and that data allows a limited (Composite Score Only)…

Wow! Even Prichard Committee agrees: ACT scores show Kentucky needs more work!

The title of the Prichard Committee’s blog says it nicely. “ACT results show far too few Kentucky high school graduates have academic preparation they need for postsecondary pursuits.” No, we didn’t write this for them. But, we agree. Clearly, Kentucky needs some fresh ideas. While the Prichard Committee probably won’t ever include charter schools in…

2016 ACT: KY Public and Non-Public Scores

Our Wednesday, August 24, 2016 blogs only cover overall average scores for all students from public, private and home schools combined. Today, we dig deeper into the data, looking at performance over time separately for Kentucky’s overall student scores, public school only scores, and non-public school only scores (including both private and home school students…

Physics? Forget it in more than half of Kentucky’s high schools!

Education Week just reported on an astonishing study of the proportion of high schools in each state that offer high school physics. With all the “Happy Talk” we’re hearing from educators about getting kids ready for careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), and given that physics is essential to enter those STEM careers,…