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Simply Outraged

October 16, 2013

We already didn’t take A-F Report Cards seriously. They are statistically unreliable. They include calculations with arbitrary weights. And they are more subject to political narratives than they are to reality.

Today, after much fanfare, schools finally received their preliminary letter grades. There were some surprises, but nothing far off the expectations that had been communicated.

Thirty minutes later, that all changed. The SDE had applied their own formula incorrectly. Apparently, someone mistook the top quartile of students in math for the bottom quartile.

They recalculated grades, and schools saw drastic changes. Many dropped by more than a letter grade.

How can anyone continue expecting people to take this seriously? In thirty minutes, we saw the biggest problem with A-F Report Cards. They depend more on the formula than they do on the students. They are useless in highlighting school performance.

  1. October 16, 2013 at 8:17 pm

    Wow. Statistics, damn statistics and lies. It begins again…


  2. October 16, 2013 at 8:18 pm

    Or is it lies, damn lies, and statistics.


  3. M.
    October 16, 2013 at 10:01 pm

    There was this awesome book published many years ago called “How to Lie with Statistics”.. It’s been around since 1954. http://www.amazon.com/How-Lie-Statistics-Darrell-Huff/dp/0393310728#reader_0393310728 Seems lying with manipulation of skewed and misappropriated parameters (i.e. arbitrary or totally uncoupled weighting factors) has been around a long time and caused spiraling out of control politics and policies for more than a half century now. I think the saddest part of this information is that the very administrations that should be ensuring that quality math education is being imparted to students can’t get their math right in reporting and ranking how they are fulfilling that very duty.



  4. October 16, 2013 at 11:24 pm

    This whole “A-F Report Card” campaign fits in with http://www.inc.com/ss/busted-worst-cases-misleading-ads#2.


  1. October 31, 2013 at 7:08 am
  2. June 12, 2014 at 5:32 pm
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