A Tale of Two Schools

Even the Prichard Committee doesn’t understand The high performing high school First, let’s talk about a very high performing high school in Kentucky’s “Unbridled Learning” school accountability program. This school’s summary of “Accountability Performance” from its 2012-13 school report card (PDF available from menus here) says this school is one of Kentucky’s best performers. In…

Closing a school, but turning it into a charter school would be much better

The Courier-Journal reports that the Jefferson County Board of Education has thrown in the towel on trying to fix the endemically troubled Myers Middle School. Essentially, Myers is going to be closed. Scheduled incoming sixth grade students this fall instead will enter a number of other schools. Myers current sixth and seventh graders, who will…

Kentucky’s Unbridled Learning school accountability program not getting its message right????

I’ve been slowly collecting examples of how Kentucky’s Unbridled Learning school accountability program may not be getting the message right. Some of the early indications are found in the Bluegrass Institute’s “Blacks Still Falling Through Gaps, the 2012 Update,” where I point to several schools that got Unbridled Learning’s top award of “School of Distinction”…

School system upset with pending federally sponsored Common Core test

The US Department of Education is spending well over $300 million on two competing test programs to assess student performance against the Common Core State Standards. One of those testing programs is being developed by the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC). The other one is from the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and…

Update – Ky. Dept. of Ed. outlaws certain calculators on test used in Unbridled Learning

Could inflate Kentucky’s College and Career Ready rates Taking a responsible action, the Kentucky Department of Education has determined that the use of smart calculators on the COMPASS test from the ACT, Inc., could inflate scores and has now outlawed use of those calculators for testing. The findings could impact the state’s reported College and…

House GOP leader: ‘Political fear’dominated 2014 General Assembly

While I’m not sure that having a “lackluster” legislative session is the worst thing that could happen to taxpayers, House Minority Leader Jeff Hoover, R-Jamestown, is right in noting that “political fear” dominated this year’s Kentucky General Assembly. Many important issues, including several mentioned by Hoover – telecom reform, right-to-work, prevailing wage, tax reform, the public-partnership…

US Secretary of Education yanks Washington State’s NCLB waiver

Huge states’ rights fight looming? Fred Hess at the American Enterprise Institute reports: Showing the taste for power that has led Sen. Lamar Alexander to accuse him of thinking he runs a national school board, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan today yanked Washington State’s “waiver” from the No Child Left Behind Act. In his letter,…

InBloom, Gates’ student-data-in-the-Cloud program, fails, shutting down

The New York Times reports that the InBloom Student Data Repository created several years ago with $100 million in seed money from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has run into fierce opposition in places like Louisiana, New York and Colorado from parents and others concerned about student data privacy. Opposition has become so fierce…