Monday, July 11, 2016

School ratings? What school ratings?

Remember when the Mississippi Department of Education said the school ratings would be released in June?  Well, it is now July and MDE still has not released the A-F ratings for public school districts and their individual schools.  The ratings are normally published around Labor Day each year but were not published last year.  JJ reported in May:

The Mississippi Department of Education will issue the annual district and school ratings in June.  The ratings are normally posted in the beginning of September each year but were delayed for nine months when the department had to move to a different location due to a fire at an adjacent building last year.  MDE told JJ this morning that the 2015-2016 ratings will probably be issued in October and thus closer to the original schedule.
However, this delay is part of a troubling trend that seems to be taking place at MDE over the last two years. The release of information about school performance has dwindled to a trickle as it has steadily disappeared from the MDE website.

The Children's First Report was a fount of information for public school districts.The single page report provided the district rating, demographics, workforce information, graduation rates, average ACT scores, and other useful facts.  This is the most recent one for the Jackson Public School District:

 This report has not been updated since the 2012-2013 school year and thus makes it harder for the public to hold public school districts and MDE accountable.  However, removal of information does not stop with this report but also includes graduation rates.

One can find information about each school in that report. The report even provides graduation rates for different genders and ethnic groups at each school. Such information is very useful in identifying who has problems graduating from high school. However, MDE has removed this information from its more recent reports. MDE now just provides an overall graduation rate for each school and its respective district.  It of course brags in press releases about its improved graduation rates while it eases graduation requirements.  

Is the Kingfish over-reacting? Look at these screenshots of MDE's  website and judge for yourself.  Click on the "State, School, or District Data" tab on this page.

Click on each image to enlarge. Select any school in the drop-down menus.  JPS will be used for the purposes of this post.  Notice the number of tabs.  The only information available is demographic information about the district and the individual schools.

The page appears similar to the one from the previous year.

Now compare these two years to what is available for the previous school year:

The page includes these sections:
Teacher: Statistics on various qualification levels of teachers
NCLB: No Child Left Behind report.  The report is still required by the replacement legislation. 
Children's First: See above
Accountability: Gave school rating and graduation rate. Previous reports gave more values.
SATP2: Subject Area Testing. Provide scores and other stats on tests in English, Math, U.S. History, and Biology.  This test is still used. 
MST2: Info on Grade 5 & 8 science test.  This test is still used. 
MCT2: Scores on Mississippi curriculum test. This test no longer exists BUT its replacement tests results for individual schools and districts, PARCC and QStar, are not placed on the website*.  PARCC was administered in the spring of 2015 and QStar was administered this year.  

Some of these changes reflect changes made in testing and adoption of the Common Core curriculum. The No Child Left Behind Act expired as well. However, these alterations have been made since 2013.  What is clear is the pattern of secrecy that is emerging at MDE as information disappears and new information is not posted to the website. 

Kingfish note: There is probably a rational and logical reason why more and more information and reports have disappeared on the MDE website.  However,  Superintendent Dr. Carey Wright refuses to talk to this website.   So we must wait on the school ratings.  Maybe we will get them next year.  

MDE issued this press release about its next board meeting:

The Mississippi State Board of Education will hold its July meeting in Biloxi on Thursday, July 14, at 10 a.m. The meeting will take place at the DuKate Building, 1445 Father Ryan Ave. The agenda for the meeting will be posted on July 13.

*The delay is probably due to appeals as the results were provided to districts in December.  


Anonymous said...

well, do they have legal or statutory requirements for posting said information?

Anonymous said...

In the interest of accuracy shouldn't MAEP stand for Mississippi Adminstrator's Employment Program, and a more accurate name for the report "Administrators First?" Let's see the per-pupil figures for non-classroom costs of running all these shitty school districts!

The Dog said...

Yes, it was me. I ate their homework.

Anonymous said...

If only they had some data gurus from Maryland to prepare these reports.

Anonymous said...

Why post the information when no one cares?

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Trollfest '09

Trollfest '07 was such a success that Jackson Jambalaya will once again host Trollfest '09. Catch this great event which will leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Othor Cain and his band, The Black Power Structure headline the night while Sonjay Poontang returns for an encore performance. Former Frank Melton bodyguard Marcus Wright makes his premier appearance at Trollfest singing "I'm a Sweet Transvestite" from "The Rocky Horror Picture Show." Kamikaze will sing his new hit, “How I sold out to da Man.” Robbie Bell again performs: “Mamas, don't let your babies grow up to be Bells” and “Any friend of Ed Peters is a friend of mine”. After the show, Ms. Bell will autograph copies of her mug shot photos. In a salute to “Dancing with the Stars”, Ms. Bell and Hinds County District Attorney Robert Smith will dance the Wango Tango.

Wrestling returns, except this time it will be a Battle Royal with Othor Cain, Ben Allen, Kim Wade, Haley Fisackerly, Alan Lange, and “Big Cat” Donna Ladd all in the ring at the same time. The Battle Royal will be in a steel cage, no time limit, no referee, and the losers must leave town. Marshand Crisler will be the honorary referee (as it gives him a title without actually having to do anything).

Meet KIM Waaaaaade at the Entergy Tent. For five pesos, Kim will sell you a chance to win a deed to a crack house on Ridgeway Street stuffed in the Howard Industries pinata. Don't worry if the pinata is beaten to shreds, as Mr. Wade has Jose, Emmanuel, and Carlos, all illegal immigrants, available as replacements for the it. Upon leaving the Entergy tent, fig leaves will be available in case Entergy literally takes everything you have as part of its Trollfest ticket price adjustment charge.

Donna Ladd of The Jackson Free Press will give several classes on learning how to write. Smearing, writing without factchecking, and reporting only one side of a story will be covered. A donation to pay their taxes will be accepted and she will be signing copies of their former federal tax liens. Ms. Ladd will give a dramatic reading of her two award-winning essays (They received The Jackson Free Press "Best Of" awards.) "Why everything is always about me" and "Why I cover murders better than anyone else in Jackson".

In the spirit of helping those who are less fortunate, Trollfest '09 adopts a cause for which a portion of the proceeds and donations will be donated: Keeping Frank Melton in his home. The “Keep Frank Melton From Being Homeless” booth will sell chances for five dollars to pin the tail on the jackass. John Reeves has graciously volunteered to be the jackass for this honorable excursion into saving Frank's ass. What's an ass between two friends after all? If Mr. Reeves is unable to um, perform, Speaker Billy McCoy has also volunteered as when the word “jackass” was mentioned he immediately ran as fast as he could to sign up.

In order to help clean up the legal profession, Adam Kilgore of the Mississippi Bar will be giving away free, round-trip plane tickets to the North Pole where they keep their bar complaint forms (which are NOT available online). If you don't want to go to the North Pole, you can enjoy Brant Brantley's (of the Mississippi Commission on Judicial Performance) free guided tours of the quicksand field over by High Street where all complaints against judges disappear. If for some reason you are unable to control yourself, never fear; Judge Houston Patton will operate his jail where no lawyers are needed or allowed as you just sit there for minutes... hours.... months...years until he decides he is tired of you sitting in his jail. Do not think Judge Patton is a bad judge however as he plans to serve free Mad Dog 20/20 to all inmates.

Trollfest '09 is a pet-friendly event as well. Feel free to bring your dog with you and do not worry if your pet gets hungry, as employees of the Jackson Zoo will be on hand to provide some of their animals as food when it gets to be feeding time for your little loved one.

Relax at the Fox News Tent. Since there are only three blonde reporters in Jackson (being blonde is a requirement for working at Fox News), Megan and Kathryn from WAPT and Wendy from WLBT will be on loan to Fox. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both and a torn-up Obama yard sign will entitle you to free drinks served by Megan, Wendy, and Kathryn. Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required. Just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '09 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.

Note: Security provided by INS.

Trollfest '07

Jackson Jambalaya is the home of Trollfest '07. Catch this great event which promises to leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Sonjay Poontang and his band headline the night with a special steel cage, no time limit "loser must leave town" bout between Alan Lange and "Big Cat"Donna Ladd following afterwards. Kamikaze will perform his new song F*** Bush, he's still a _____. Did I mention there was no referee? Dr. Heddy Matthias and Lori Gregory will face off in the undercard dueling with dangling participles and other um, devices. Robbie Bell will perform Her two latest songs: My Best Friends are in the Media and Mama's, Don't Let Your Babies Grow up to be George Bell. Sid Salter of The Clarion-Ledger will host "Pin the Tail on the Trial Lawyer", sponsored by State Farm.

There will be a hugging booth where in exchange for your young son, Frank Melton will give you a loooong hug. Trollfest will have a dunking booth where Muhammed the terrorist will curse you to Allah as you try to hit a target that will drop him into a vat of pig grease. However, in the true spirit of Separate But Equal, Don Imus and someone from NE Jackson will also sit in the dunking booth for an equal amount of time. Tom Head will give a reading for two hours on why he can't figure out who the hell he is. Cliff Cargill will give lessons with his .80 caliber desert eagle, using Frank Melton photos as targets. Tackleberry will be on hand for an autograph session. KIM Waaaaaade will be passing out free titles and deeds to crackhouses formerly owned by The Wood Street Players.

If you get tired come relax at the Fox News Tent. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both will entitle you to free drinks.Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required, just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '07 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.

Note: Security provided by INS