Beyond Test Scores: A Better Way to Measure School Quality

Harvard University Press - And parents can make better-informed choices for their children. Perhaps most importantly, allowing them to take collective action toward shared, better data can facilitate communication among all these groups, concrete goals. Educators can engage in more evidence-based decision making. Policy makers, administrators, and school leaders can better identify where assistance is needed.

. It is time―indeed past time―to rethink this system, Jack Schneider says. Beyond test scores reframes current debates over school quality by offering new approaches to educational data that can push us past our unproductive fixation on test scores. And by adopting a wide range of measures aligned with that framework, they were able to more accurately capture a broader array of school strengths and weaknesses.

Yet ample research indicates that standardized tests are a poor way to measure a school’s performance. Using the highly diverse urban school district of Somerville, as a case study, Massachusetts, Schneider and his research team developed a new framework to more fairly and comprehensively assess educational effectiveness.

Beyond Test Scores: A Better Way to Measure School Quality - When it comes to sizing up america’s public schools, test scores are the go-to metric of state policy makers and anxious parents looking to place their children in the “best” schools. Harvard. Their new data not only provided parents, and administrators with a clearer picture of school performance, educators, but also challenged misconceptions about what makes a good school.

With better data, schneider shows, state, stakeholders at the federal, and local levels can undo the damage of present accountability systems and build greater capacity in our schools.





The Testing Charade: Pretending to Make Schools Better

University of Chicago Press - For decades we’ve been studying, experimenting with, and there’s still little consensus on what works, and wrangling over different approaches to improving public education, and what to do. Rather than setting up incentives to divert instructional time to pointless test prep, he argues, we need to measure what matters, and measure it in multiple ways—not just via standardized tests.

Right now, we’re lying to ourselves about whether our children are learning. In this powerful polemic, built on unimpeachable evidence and rooted in decades of experience with educational testing, Koretz calls out high-stakes testing as a sham, a false idol that is ripe for manipulation and shows little evidence of leading to educational improvement.

Lots of them. Chicago. And the longer we accept that lie, the more damage we do. Daniel koretz, one of the nation’s foremost experts on educational testing, argues in The Testing Charade that the whole idea of test-based accountability has failed—it has increasingly become an end in itself, harming students and corrupting the very ideals of teaching.

The Testing Charade: Pretending to Make Schools Better - But what does that mean in practice?   High-stakes tests. The one thing people seem to agree on, however, is that schools need to be held accountable—we need to know whether what they’re doing is actually working. It’s time to end our blind reliance on high-stakes tests. And that has become a major problem.





Addicted to Reform: A 12-Step Program to Rescue Public Education

The New Press - It is a “big book” that forms an astute and urgent blueprint for providing a quality education to every American child. Now, the revered education correspondent of pbs newshour distills his best thinking on education into a twelve-step approach to fixing a K–12 system that Merrow describes as being “addicted to reform” but unwilling to address the real issue: American public schools are ill-equipped to prepare young people for the challenges of the twenty-first century.

Addicted to reform is written with the kind of passionate concern that could come only from a lifetime devoted to the people and places that constitute the foundation of our nation. Along the way, he taught in a high school, at a historically black college, and at a federal penitentiary. The prize-winning pbs correspondent's provocative antidote to america’s misguided approaches to k-12 school reformduring an illustrious four-decade career at NPR and PBS, John Merrow—winner of the George Polk Award, and the McGraw Prize—reported from every state in the union, as well as from dozens of countries, the Peabody Award, on everything from the rise of district-wide cheating scandals and the corporate greed driving an ADD epidemic to teacher-training controversies and America’s obsession with standardized testing.

Addicted to Reform: A 12-Step Program to Rescue Public Education - His signature candid style of reportage comes to life as he shares lively anecdotes, schoolyard tales, and memories that are at once instructive and endearing. This insightful book looks at how to turn digital natives into digital citizens and why it should be harder to become a teacher but easier to be one.

New press. Chicago.





In Search of Deeper Learning: The Quest to Remake the American High School

Harvard University Press - The best book on high school dynamics I have ever read. Jay mathews, washington postan award-winning professor and an accomplished educator take us beyond the hype of reform and inside some of America’s most innovative classrooms to show what is working―and what isn’t―in our schools. What would it take to transform industrial-era schools into modern organizations capable of supporting deep learning for all? Jal Mehta and Sarah Fine’s quest to answer this question took them inside some of America’s most innovative schools and classrooms―places where educators are rethinking both what and how students should learn.

The story they tell is alternately discouraging and hopeful. New press. Chicago. The first panoramic study of american public high schools since the 1980s, In Search of Deeper Learning lays out a new vision for American education―one that will set the agenda for schools of the future. And yet they find pockets of powerful learning at almost every school, often in electives and extracurriculars as well as in a few mold-breaking academic courses.

In Search of Deeper Learning: The Quest to Remake the American High School - Drawing on hundreds of hours of observations and interviews at thirty different schools, Mehta and Fine reveal that deeper learning is more often the exception than the rule. These spaces achieve depth, the authors argue, cultivate community, because they emphasize purpose and choice, and draw on powerful traditions of apprenticeship.

These outliers suggest that it is difficult but possible for schools and classrooms to achieve the integrations that support deep learning: rigor with joy, precision with play, mastery with identity and creativity.





The Understanding by Design Guide to Advanced Concepts in Creating and Reviewing Units

ASCD - New press. Chicago. The guide is intended for use by individuals or groups in K 16 education teachers, curriculum directors, graduate and undergraduate students in curriculum, school and district administrators, and others who want to further develop their skill in Understanding by Design. Users can work through the modules in order or pick and choose, depending on their interests and needs.

Understanding by design is based on a backward design approach and is used by thousands of educators to create curriculum units and assessments that focus on developing students understanding of essential ideas and helping students attain important skills.





What School Could Be: Insights and Inspiration from Teachers across America

Princeton University Press - Together, these new ways of teaching and learning offer a vision of what school could be―and a model for transforming schools throughout the United States and beyond. They can readily implement small changes that can make a big difference. America's clock is ticking. Chicago. Better yet, teachers and parents don't have to wait for the revolution to come from above.

All across the country, he met teachers in ordinary settings doing extraordinary things, agency, creating innovative classrooms where children learn deeply and joyously as they gain purpose, essential skillsets and mindsets, and real knowledge. But the trailblazing of many American educators gives us reasons for hope.

What School Could Be: Insights and Inspiration from Teachers across America - Capturing bold ideas from teachers and classrooms across America, What School Could Be provides a realistic and profoundly optimistic roadmap for creating cultures of innovation and real learning in all our schools. An inspiring account of teachers in ordinary circumstances doing extraordinary things, showing us how to transform educationWhat School Could Be offers an inspiring vision of what our teachers and students can accomplish if trusted with the challenge of developing the skills and ways of thinking needed to thrive in a world of dizzying technological change.

Innovation expert ted dintersmith took an unprecedented trip across America, visiting all fifty states in a single school year. New press. Our archaic model of education trains our kids for a world that no longer exists, and accelerating advances in technology are eliminating millions of jobs.





Grading Education: Getting Accountability Right

Teachers College Press & Economic Policy Inst. - Defines the broad goals of education, beyond math and reading test scores, and reports on surveys to confirm public and governmental support for such goals. Yes, we should hold public schools accountable for effectively spending the vast funds with which they have been entrusted. Instead of just grading progress in one or two narrow subjects, an appreciation of the arts, we should hold schools accountable for the broad outcomes we expect from public education ―basic knowledge and skills, critical thinking, physical and emotional health, and preparation for skilled employment ―and then develop the means to measure and ensure schools’ success in achieving them.

Used book in Good Condition. This important resource: describes the design of an alternative accountability system that would not corrupt education as does NCLB and its state testing systems Explains the original design of NAEP in the 1960s, and shows why it should be revived. Grading education describes a new kind of accountability plan for public education, one that relies on higher-quality testing, focuses on professional evaluation, and builds on capacities we already possess.

Grading Education: Getting Accountability Right - Chicago. But accountability policies like no child left Behind, misidentified both failing and successful schools, have narrowed the curriculum, based exclusively on math and reading test scores, and established irresponsible expectations for what schools can accomplish. New press. Relates these broad goals of education to the desire for accountability in education.





Essential Assessment Concepts for Teachers and Administrators Experts In Assessment Series

Corwin - Chicago. In this book, the author examines essential assessment concepts and how assessment can enhance student learning and motivation. New press. Used book in Good Condition. Used book in Good Condition.





Beyond Testing: Seven Assessments of Students and Schools More Effective Than Standardized Tests

Teachers College Press - Readers can compare and contrast each approach and make informed decisions about what is most appropriate for their school. Book features:legendary educator Deborah Meier’s thinking on assessments as they relate to the central goal of educating for democracy. Effective approaches for getting to know the strengths and challenges of individual students and schools.

Multiple examples of children and schools for each assessment. A case study of 38 successful high schools in New York using performance assessments in place of standardized tests. Used book in Good Condition. New press. The authors of this timely book argue that a fundamentally complex problem―how to assess the knowledge of a child―cannot be reduced to a simple test score.

Beyond Testing: Seven Assessments of Students and Schools More Effective Than Standardized Tests - Beyond testing describes seven forms of assessment that are more effective than standardized test results: 1 student self-assessments, 6 school reviews and observations by outside professionals, 2 direct teacher observations of students and their work, 4 reading and math interviews with children, 3 descriptive reviews of the child, 5 portfolios and public defense of student work, and 7 school boards and town meetings.

These assessments are more honest about what we can and cannot know about children’s knowledge, skills, and dispositions, and are more adaptable to varying educational missions. Chicago. Used book in Good Condition.





Preparing Teachers for Deeper Learning

Harvard Education Press - Chicago. In today’s knowledge economy, adaptability, critical thinking, teachers must prioritize problem-solving ability, and the development of interpersonal and collaborative skills over rote memorization and the passive transmission of knowledge. New press. These seven programs share a common understanding of how people learn that shape similar innovative practices.

With vivid examples of teaching for deeper learning in coursework and classrooms; interviews with faculty, and experiences, school partners, Preparing Teachers for Deeper Learning depicts transformative forms of teaching and teacher preparation that honor and expand all students’ abilities, and novice teachers; surveys of teacher candidates and graduates; and analyses of curriculum and practices, knowledges, and reaffirm the promise of educating for a better world.

Preparing Teachers for Deeper Learning - Authors linda darling-hammond and jeannie Oakes and their colleagues examine what this means for teacher preparation and showcase the work of programs that are educating for deeper learning, equity, and social justice. Used book in Good Condition. Used book in Good Condition. Preparing teachers for deeper Learning answers an urgent call for teachers who educate children from diverse backgrounds to meet the demands of a changing world.

Guided by the growing knowledge base in the science of learning and development, San Francisco Teacher Residency, Bank Street College of Education, the book examines teacher preparation programs at Alverno College, Trinity University, Montclair State University, High Tech High’s Intern Program, and University of Colorado Denver.





Educational Inequality and School Finance: Why Money Matters for America's Students

Harvard Education Press - Baker offers a comprehensive examination of how US public schools receive and spend money. Used book in Good Condition. Chicago. He argues that we know a great deal about the role and importance of money in schools, the mechanisms through which money matters for student outcomes, and the trade-offs involved, and he presents a framework for designing and financing an equitable and adequate public education system, with balanced and stable sources of revenue.

He provides a critical examination of popular assumptions that undergird the policy discourse around school funding—notably, that money doesn’t matter and that we are spending more and getting less—and shows how these misunderstandings contribute to our reluctance to increase investment in education at a time when the demands on our educational system are rising.

Educational Inequality and School Finance: Why Money Matters for America's Students - Baker explores school finance, the school and classroom resources derived from school funding, and how and why those resources matter. In educational Inequality and School Finance, Bruce D. Drawing on extensive longitudinal data and numerous studies of states and districts, he provides a vivid and dismaying portrait of the stagnation of state investment in public education and the continuing challenges of achieving equity and adequacy in school funding.

Used book in Good Condition. New press. Through an introduction to the concepts of adequacy, and efficiency, equity, productivity, Baker shows how these can be used to evaluate policy reforms.