Through The Looking Glass

The new NAEP history scores are no great shakes (although I don’t pay very much attention to 12th-grade scores) but they’re also hardly as awful as they’re being played.  And shouldn’t we be happy that African-American and Hispanic kids are making progress even if the gaps do remain frustratingly stubborn?

Instead, the results are being turned into some sort of referendum on No Child Left Behind (even though history teaching was problematic long before 2001 and the results don’t really support that claim anyway). Most amazing, it’s almost as if people are cheering and hoping for bad news. In fact, the very folks who used to complain that the media only focused on the bad news about public schools are now the very ones declaring everything is bad news! Yesterday’s scores could have been a lot better, sure, but there were some rays of hope in there, too.

6 Replies to “Through The Looking Glass”

  1. the rays of hope, andy, are specifically that the scale scores of the AA and Hispanic subgroups on the 4th and 8th grade assessments improved far better than marginally in the 2000s.

    as you say, there is no direct correlation to nclb or any other large scale policies since civics is not a generally tested subject. one might surmise that better readers do better generally on such assessments.

  2. i mentioned civics in my comment but failed to address history. the point is even stronger on history, and there’s a comparison from 2001 to 2010. AA and Hispanic scores up roughly 1 1/2 grade levels in the 4th grade and almost a grade level in the 8th grade.

    i have no thesis as to causality and certainly agree that our students have a long way to go. but there is real improvement for disadvantaged students.

  3. If this is a social studies/history/civics test, are the questions and answers read aloud to the students?

  4. In these intense times when it seems as though our public education system may not be the best option for parents to utilize in educating their children anymore, parents are left with finding other options for making certain that their children can get a good education, without all of the negative incidents that are happening in the public schools. One very good choice for giving kids the courses they need is to enroll them in an nline home school

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