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Re: “The Best Way To Get Results-Based Funding Is To Be Well-Off and White

To mystery education policy man - I am sorry for being pedantic, but the U.S. constitution does not mandate the existence of the public schooling industry. It requires that schooling, like all other public benefits, to be provided in accordance with the equal protection guarantees of the 14th amendment, but it doesn't require that any state provide public schooling in the first place.

2 likes, 8 dislikes
Posted by Nathan K on 10/05/2017 at 12:38 PM

Re: “Why I Keep Writing About Those Damn AzMERIT Scores

Response to this column and bslap.

David, everything that you have said is absolutely correct but our current education culture is defined by all the mechanisms that you decry. Every year for almost hundred years the local papers have printed test scores which people then assume that the school created. Actually, as you point out, the school largely collects those test scores and, to some small degree, creates them.

There are only two ways to break this culture - 1) big system and 2) small system. I've tried the big system and it flopped totally. In 1999, I introduced the Finland technique of sampling, sampling 9,000 students a semester so that, with a low-stakes NAEP style test, we would have a large enough sample to know our results within one percentile point, thus enabling us to pick up and reinforce real changes. No one could comprehend what it was all about. It was just incomprehensible to them, the rationale, the idea that 9,000 tests would be more accurate than 500,000, the lack of feedback at the local level, etc. It was like fighting a forest fire with a squirt gun.

Right now, as you point out, tests like AzMerit are worthless for telling us if Arizona is better than last year. These tests told every state in the nation that they improved in 2015 then NAEP comes out and tells us the truth - that more than half got worse. Their annual tests were just an illusion.

The other way to break this culture is 2) small system. That' s what I am trying now. To set a land speed record for academic gains in one year in one classroom. My simple hypothesis is derived from the research knowledge that students from poverty have poor attitudes towards school and as a result, practice the crafts of reading and math less than 2 minutes a day each.

This morning at 8 am, my all-minority all at-risk students did 12,489 math problems correctly - 97% of them without referring to their fingers, an average of 657 each. The high student did 1,414, the low student did 278. Over 50% of the class made overt expressions of joy at setting new records. I have created a culture of math where students strut around bragging about their abilities.

This afternoon, I will return to the class and if past patterns hold, they will do another 10,500 math problems correctly- their productivity dropping about 15% at the end of the day. Thus their total will be about 23,000 math problems in one day.

The teachers on this thread react with seething hostility assuming that I am destroying these children's attitudes towards school with unending drudgery instead of asking the simple, "what is he doing differently?" The truth is that you can't get students to do this much math if its drudgery. I know because all the scientific tools I use for math fluency are not yet available to me for math comprehension. Tomorrow, as we work on math comprehension (word problems), they will only do 50 problems each when in theory they could do as many as 500. Within three years, I will have all these problems solved.

In railing against this culture, you are not outside of it, you have chosen to be part of it. You assume that it is as good as we can get despite 40 years of no improvement.

I am determined to break its iron grip on the poor and minorities.

At least get those two-year gains by school for low SES students, rank them and go see what the very high gain schools and school districts are doing differently. Pull their erasure rates while you are at it.

Go talk to Ed Sloat of Peoria, he always did a regression analysis that washed away SES to look at real performance. See if he has a true ranking for you for the schools of the state.

1 like, 4 dislikes
Posted by jhuppent@hotmail.com on 10/05/2017 at 12:23 PM

Re: “The Skinny

Thank you Martha. Job well done.

4 likes, 21 dislikes
Posted by Wayne Olson on 10/05/2017 at 12:03 PM

Re: “Foggy Forecast

It's time for us, the majority of The People to take back control of our national marijuana policy. By voting OUT of office any and all politicians who very publicly and vocally admit to having an anti-marijuana, prohibitionist agenda! Time to vote'em all OUT of office. Period. Plain and simple.

Politicians who continue to demonize Marijuana, Corrupt Law Enforcement Officials who prefer to ruin peoples lives over Marijuana possession rather than solve real crimes who fund their departments toys and salaries with monies acquired through Marijuana home raids, seizures and forfeitures, and so-called "Addiction Specialists" who make their income off of the judicial misfortunes of our citizens who choose marijuana, - Your actions go against The Will of The People and Your Days In Office Are Numbered! Find new careers before you don't have one.

The People have spoken! Get on-board with Marijuana Legalization Nationwide, or be left behind and find new careers. Your choice.

Legalize Nationwide!

Every major poll in the nation shows A Solid Majority of Americans favor The Legalization of Marijuana Nationwide!

"Americans Favor Legalizing Marijuana Support surged 10 percentage points in past year""
http://www.gallup.com/poll/186260/back-leg…

"A solid majority of voters nationwide favor legalizing and regulating marijuana similar to the way alcohol and tobacco cigarettes are currently regulated. Most also dont believe it should be a crime for people to smoke marijuana in the privacy of their own homes"
http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_con…

"Americans favor making cannabis legal for adults, according to the findings of a CNN/ORC International survey released late Monday. The percentage is the highest ever reported by the survey, which has been tracking public opinion on the issue since 1973, and marks a 12 percentage point jump in support since the last time pollsters posed the question in 2012"
http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2014/…

3 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Brian Kelly on 10/05/2017 at 11:55 AM

Re: “Foggy Forecast

The "War on Marijuana" has been a complete and utter failure. It is the largest component of the broader yet equally unsuccessful "War on Drugs" that has cost our country over a trillion dollars.

Instead of The United States wasting Billions upon Billions more of our yearly tax dollars fighting a never ending "War on Marijuana", lets generate Billions of dollars, and improve the deficit instead. It's a no brainer.

The Prohibition of Marijuana has also ruined the lives of many of our loved ones. In numbers greater than any other nation, our loved ones are being sent to jail and are being given permanent criminal records which ruin their chances of employment for the rest of their lives, and for what reason?

Marijuana is much safer to consume than alcohol. Yet do we lock people up for choosing to drink?

The government should never attempt to legislate morality by creating victim-less marijuana "crimes" because it simply does not work and costs the taxpayers a fortune.

Marijuana Legalization Nationwide is an inevitable reality that's approaching much sooner than prohibitionists think and there is nothing they can do to stop it!

Legalize Nationwide! Support Each and Every Marijuana Legalization Initiative!

4 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Brian Kelly on 10/05/2017 at 11:54 AM

Re: “Foggy Forecast

Marijuana consumers deserve and demand equal rights and protections under our laws that are currently afforded to the drinkers of far more dangerous and deadly, yet perfectly legal, widely accepted, endlessly advertised and even glorified as an All American pastime, alcohol.

Plain and simple!

Legalize Marijuana Nationwide!

4 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Brian Kelly on 10/05/2017 at 11:53 AM

Re: “Gabby Giffords on Las Vegas Mass Shooting: "This Must Stop"

Tell us Peabrain. what law would have prevented any of this.

7 likes, 29 dislikes
Posted by CW13 on 10/05/2017 at 11:50 AM

Re: “Procession Migration

Please come and celebrate your loved ones in a unique way that is only Tucson. #GlitterGirlAZ be hosting our Face Painting event at a private restaurant near the start of the #AllSoulsProcession at Speedway & Grande! #GlitterGirlAZ is Now Booking Day of the Dead Make-up Transformations for Sunday, November 5th, from 10am-11pm. If you are a Professional Face Painter or Makeup artist and want to be a Featured Artist with #GlitterGirlAZ please message me your email and phone number! Thank you ! Please look up #GlitterGirlAZ on Facebook to see more and to message us!

4 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Gina Castillo on 10/05/2017 at 11:44 AM

Re: “Procession Migration

bslap, This is exactly the reason the procession is being moved to the West side. The influence of the procession comes from the Latino beliefs and therefore will be pushed out of the center city just like the population and the barrio was....

2 likes, 5 dislikes
Posted by icecld51 on 10/05/2017 at 11:27 AM

Re: “The Best Way To Get Results-Based Funding Is To Be Well-Off and White

sabasabas, the law specifies that half or more of the results-based money will be allocated for teacher-related uses. Ducey has said frequently that half of that funding is earmarked for teacher raises. https://azgovernor.gov/FY18budget

If your school tells you something else, you should ask what "teacher-related uses" half the funds are going to be used for.

4 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by David Safier on 10/05/2017 at 11:01 AM

Re: “The Best Way To Get Results-Based Funding Is To Be Well-Off and White

I have an open mind. Despite hundreds of documented attempts and likely thousands of actual attempts, results-based funding has never worked anywhere in the world. However, our letter grade system now has some unique characteristics to it. It incorporates not just the gain from last years test scores, same student to same student not average to average, but also the two-year gains from the year prior to that. This new aspect increases the very small sample sizes associated with gain calculations and also makes it more difficult to game.

Not only those changes but they also introduced the measurement of gain for low SES students as a separate component. Think about that. How many schools can keep 20 low SES students for two years and provide them with above average gains? Many currently A-rated schools aren't even competitive in this category because they cant' muster that 20. It will be interesting to see how many well-branded schools end up as "Bs" and as to whether the state board will grade inflate next year.

This pressure overwhelmed the board in 2014. Brace yourself for the next assault.

Disentangling the outcome of results-based funding will be a researchers case study par excellence - separating the wheat from the chaf. Arizona is already sporting the highest academic gains in the nation before this "innovation." And, we've had major policy makers waxing poetic about chaf following that outcome.

They key will be to follow the other letter grade states. I would assume that they will be falling in national rank as a result of the deleterious effects of letter grading. But, maybe not. Many of them are also doing multiple policy initiatives.

3 likes, 7 dislikes
Posted by jhuppent@hotmail.com on 10/05/2017 at 10:59 AM

Re: “The Best Way To Get Results-Based Funding Is To Be Well-Off and White

Are kids attending schools that have classrooms staffed by a rotating cast of long term subs without teaching certification rather than by fully qualified, permanent teachers being given the best possible chance to get the highest test scores they are capable of? No. Every school that has not been able to secure qualified faculty for every teaching position should automatically be exempted from participating in this Hunger-Games-style competition for funding.

In answer to Nathan K: No, giving more left-leaning, unionized workers jobs is not the point. The point is giving all our young people the best possible opportunity we can give them to develop proficiency in the subject areas taught in school. If youd like to re-do the US Constitution, you can remove fully educating every citizen as a goal that should be achieved by our education system. Otherwise, youve got to keep trying to get the job done, in spite of the obstacles poverty presents. This is what underfunding the public education system and / or providing extra funding only for portions of it that produce certain test scores does: it actively undermines our ability to get the entire citizenry properly educated and to have a democracy that functions properly.

6 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Democracy requires sufficient funding for ALL schools. on 10/05/2017 at 10:22 AM

Re: “Editor's Note

I wish.

6 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Wayne Olson on 10/05/2017 at 10:04 AM

Re: “The Best Way To Get Results-Based Funding Is To Be Well-Off and White

Maybe we should institute reverse results based funding, and give schools with students who have lower test scores more money. We can call it the "silk purses initiative". It would fail, obviously, just like Head Start and similar programs. But more left-leaning, unionized workers would get jobs. And ultimately, isn't that the real purpose of the public education industry?

2 likes, 8 dislikes
Posted by Nathan K on 10/05/2017 at 9:51 AM

Re: “The Best Way To Get Results-Based Funding Is To Be Well-Off and White

@Sabasas: if I recall correctly from your previous posts, you teach at University High School, which tests students for admission to its publicly funded programs and accepts only students with high GPAs and high score on tests of cognitive ability, I.e., you teach a cohort that is without question the easiest cohort in Tucson with which to obtain the high test scores that yield performance based funding. Because of the character of the student population of UHS, fully qualified, experienced teachers line up in droves to compete for any open position at UHS, and new hires often have years of documented history of success teaching AP courses at Catalina Foothills High School and elsewhere.

Should teachers at UHS be outraged that their salaries are not increased with the performance based funding they receive? Depends on how you look at it. On the one hand, all teachers in this state are shamefully underpaid, including those at UHS. On the other hand, UHS has to compete for top students with institutions like Salpointe, which recently introduced a 1:1 laptop computer program and built a multi-million dollar STEM Center, and Catalina Foothills High School, which has much better supplementary funding for technology and other purposes through its foundation than UHS does. UHS already has no trouble attracting qualified faculty because of the selectiveness of its student population, so if they are going to apply the money in a way that increases their ability to compete for top students, there is no reason for them to increase salaries rather than to beef up technology, which they need to do to offer services more comparable to their rivals.

Another point to consider when asking yourself if UHS faculty should be angry that their salaries are not being increased with performance based funding: from a supply-and-demand perspective and from an apply-the-money-where-it-will-go-furthest-in-increasing-quality-of-services-to-students perspective, when you look at the overall staffing situation in TUSD, it would make more sense for funding supplements to increase salaries to be applied in schools that have teaching positions they have been unable to fill with fully qualified teachers than to apply funding supplements to reward teachers of top students who are already rewarded by the relative ease of getting good test scores out of kind of students they teach. But the state legislature does not think that way, and it doesnt seem to occur to TUSD to apply its desegregation funding supplements that way, either, or at least not enough to fill the vacant positions in its schools serving low-SES, high minority schools 100% with qualified faculty.

Mores the pity.

6 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Should UHS teachers be outraged? on 10/05/2017 at 9:37 AM

Re: “Editor's Note

This is "The Onion", right...?

7 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Jerry Cagle on 10/05/2017 at 9:14 AM

Re: “The Weekly List: 25 Things To Do In Tucson In The Next Week

The Jewish Museum block party is a collaboration with the Mexican Consulate and will also feature live music from Mexico City. Way more than just food trucks.

4 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by More Than Food on 10/05/2017 at 9:11 AM

Re: “The Power of Positivity

I was on TIHAN's Board of Directors when the idea of the Poz Cafe was brought to us. I was skeptical, not at all confident it would succeed. Sometimes it's marvelous to be proved wrong! Congratulations and thanks to all who have contributed to the 25,000 meal success of Poz Cafe.

Posted by franklymydears on 10/05/2017 at 8:47 AM

Re: “The Power of Positivity

I was on TIHAN's Board when the idea of the Poz Caf was introduced and I was not confident it would succeed. Sometimes it's great to be wrong!

Posted by franklymydears on 10/05/2017 at 8:44 AM

Re: “The Skinny

" One loosened hiring requirements for veterans who wanted to work for the Border Patrol, while another allowed WWII-era servicewomen to be buried at Arlington National Cemetery." Wowee! And consequently the quality-of-life of McSally's constituents has improved immeasurably. Let's hear it from the family's of the WWII-era sevicewomen [great grandmothers] that live in McSally's district. I'm a veteran and only 82, maybe I should consider applying for a job with the Border Patrol. And we pay her salary?

26 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by DennyG on 10/05/2017 at 8:27 AM

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