Race Behind School Score Declines
The entire No Child Left Behind agenda has nothing to do with education. In all cases it's about forcing everyone in the public schools to "achieve" at the same level. In every case this means either watering-down classes so the slowest can pass, or simply teaching the test. In most cases both.
There's a lot of cheating I believe as well. When this started in 2002 in Virginia for example, statewide we had a 97 percent failure rate. Today it's nearly everyone passes. This is at the same time SAT scores have been falling.
The real problem they avoid is I.Q. which brings in the issue of race. Over 50 years of integration, special programs, race quotas, etc. hasn't change the fact that whites and Asians far outperform blacks and Hispanics taking the same classes in the same schools.
Yet even in the worse schools more than two-thirds of white students excel, while as much as 80% of black/Hispanic students fail in math, science, etc. Before the screams of racism start, this is from the liberal New York Times. (August 27, 2007)
Black students on average scored 433 in critical reading and 429 in math; the averages for Puerto Rican students were 459 and 454; and those for white students were 527 and 534...the overall results "really foreshadow what the future will look like" as the nation's student population diversifies and college attendance rises. Three years ago, only a third of the students taking the SAT were members of minorities compared with 39 percent this year. "Within 10 years, we are likely to see no majority group taking the SATs."
The entire liberal political agenda is built on the belief of tabula rasa (Locke) that humans are born with no innate tendencies, or simply a "blank slate." We are a product of environment alone. Yet science has completely disproved this.
The ratio of genetic to environment is about 50/50. East Asians in fact tend to outscore whites (in the broad sense) while Jews score the highest of all.
But if we single out certain groups within whites, Episcopalian's do better than East Asians overall, Unitarians outscore even Jews. In fact Asians are refused "preferences" under so-called affirmative action because they are successful. In fact they are hurt by it as more qualified whites, Asians, and Jews alike are refused positions in colleges, etc. in order to fill them with less qualified blacks and Hispanics, many end up dropping out.
NCLB problem attempts to cover up this fact in public schools, but it shows up in collage where the black SAT scores are almost 100 points below whites, Hispanics in between. (New York Times) This also mirrors the IQ gap.
It's no surprise that schools fail where blacks, taking the same classes, etc. still fail to pass in large numbers. (Or the system is rigged to make it look equal.) Equal education means going to the same schools, using the same books, taking the same classes, etc.
Because certain social groups continue to fail when treated equally, is not the fault of everyone else. Dropping out of school, using drugs or getting pregnant is a personal responsibility beyond the education system. In other words education is academics alone, not social engineering. Education is critical in an open, competitive scientific and technological society.
Equal education is equality of opportunity, the result is up to the individual and his/her family. I present the information below, believe what you want. Now they try to impose standards on those that can't follow them, while the left opposes it. Read this from Helen A. Moore Testing Whiteness: No Child or No School Left Behind?, 18 Washington University Journal of Law and Policy 173-201, 173-174 (2005):
...the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB) as a manifest social policy that imbeds racial formation practices centered around whiteness into a national movement of standardized testing. The first section of this article provides background information on the NCLB, the construction of school testing, and potential policies that advantage whiteness.
The second section describes key elements of "testing whiteness" that invalidate the assumptions of NCLB and raise legal, social, and policy questions for the courts and our communities. I draw on Larry P. and the critiques of racialized testing patterns as instructive of potential judicial frameworks for these ongoing educational issues. Our legal and educational responses to NCLB may become the frame for educational policy challenges that confront public education and race dynamics over the coming decades...
Quoting the Bristol Herald Courier, Aug 24, 2007 extract,
Seven Southwest Virginia schools failed to make adequate yearly progress under the federal No Child Left Behind Act for the 2006-07 school year, according to data released Thursday by the state's education department. Virginia Middle School didn't make AYP (adequate yearly progress) because its black students under performed in their English classes. In addition, the middle school's students with disabilities under performed in math...
No Child Left Behind seeks to have all students - regardless of race, poverty level or disability - proficient in reading and mathematics by 2014...schools must meet 29 objectives, and state education officials note that a school could be improving overall but still be listed as failing to make adequate progress by falling short on just one objective...
Note that Virginia Middle School sits right at the edge of a public housing project. Va middle School http://www.bristolvaschools.org/vms/
In other words, regardless of ability or desire, they want everyone to come out the same, the left wants the system rigged as before and use differing standards. The goal is social engineering and social leveling, not excellence.
As the news reports show below, the growing numbers of black and Hispanic students will continue to drag the entire system down. Yes, it is good they are staying in school to take the test, but I question the unsupported claim that somehow racism or poverty is the cause.
Poor whites in fact outnumber poor minorities and do better in the same schools anyway. If it's just racism, then why do Asians do so well, in fact out-scoring the average white? The entire NCLB system is just opens up the public school systems for more Federal control, which I believe is the real goal.
I also have reason to believe there's a lot of fraud in these tests. When Virginia first came out with these tests five years ago, 97% of the schools failed. Yet today they are all passing while SAT scores are dropping? They stated outright the test needed reworking, should "reflect diversity" (meaning water them down), etc. Does closing the "achievement gap" mean bringing those on the bottom up, or those on the top down? In the five years I've looked into this subject nobody has presented a coherent baseline.
Tabula rasa (Latin: scraped tablet or clean slate) refers to the epistemological thesis that individual human beings are born with no innate or built-in mental content, in a word, "blank", and that their entire resource of knowledge is built up gradually from their experiences and sensory perceptions of the outside world. Proponents of tabula rasa favor "nurture" in the nature versus nurture debate. Modern genetic research finds that genes have a certain effect on personal characteristics.
Some traits are more strongly influenced by experience, such as one's language, religion or some elements of gender identity, and other traits are supposedly more strongly influenced by genes, such as IQ, alcoholism, or certain other elements of sexual traits. wiki
Sociobiology, James O. Wilson
Wilson defined sociobiology as "the systematic study of the biological basis of all social behavior." By applying evolutionary principles to understanding the social behavior of animals, including humans, Wilson established sociobiology as a new scientific field.
He argued that all animal behavior, even that of humans, is influenced by genes and never entirely of free will. He called this concept the "genetic leash." The sociobiological view is that all animal social behavior is governed by epigenetic rules worked out by the laws of evolution. This theory and research proved to be seminal, controversial, and influential.
The controversy of sociobiological research is in how it applies to humans. The theory established a scientific argument for rejecting the common doctrine of tabula rasa, which holds that human beings were born without any innate mental content and that culture functioned to increase human knowledge and aid in survival and success.
In the final chapter of the book Sociobiology and in the full text of his Pulitzer Prize-winning On Human Nature, Wilson argued that the human mind was shaped as much by genetic inheritance as it was by culture (if not more). There were limits on just how much influence social and environmental factors could have in altering human behavior. Wiki
The lead article in the June 2005 issue of Psychology, Public Policy and Law, a journal of the American Psychological Association, examined 10 categories of research evidence from around the world to contrast "a hereditarian model (50% genetic-50% cultural) and a culture-only model (0% genetic-100% cultural)...
"Neither the existence nor the size of race differences in IQ are a matter of dispute, only their cause," write the authors. The Black-White difference has been found consistently from the time of the massive World War I Army testing of 90 years ago to a massive study of over 6 million corporate, military, and higher-education test-takers in 2001.
"Race differences show up by 3 years of age, even after matching on maternal education and other variables," said Rushton. "Therefore they cannot be due to poor education since this has not yet begun to exert an effect. That's why Jensen and I looked at the genetic hypothesis in detail. We examined 10 categories of evidence..."
Quoting the Washingtonpost.com, In Virginia, Reopening the Gap June 6, 2005; A19 extract. The writer is policy director of something called the Education Trust. In other words it's a another left-wing social group more interested in social quality than education. What about education and not just "close the gap?"
Closing the academic achievement gap is finally among the highest priorities of our nation's schools. This focus is entirely right: The divide between education "haves" and "have-nots" has always been wide. But in the 1990s, just as education was becoming more important to success in life, the divide grew even wider. With the passage of the No Child Left Behind legislation (NCLB) in 2001, Congress acted decisively to reverse this trend and to demand that public education close the gap once and for all. The law calls on the states to take responsibility for educating all children, by holding schools accountable for success with all -- not just some -- groups of students.
Among youth ages 16 to 24, Hispanics accounted for 40 percent of all high school dropouts in 2004. However, they only made up 17 percent of the total youth population.
Differences by Race and Ethnicity: Black and Hispanic youth are more likely than non-Hispanic whites to drop out of high school. In 2004, 7 percent of non-Hispanic whites ages 16 to 24 were not enrolled in school and had not completed high school, compared with 12 percent of blacks and 24 percent of Hispanics.
The high rate for Hispanics is in part the result of the high proportion of immigrants in this age group who never attended school in the U.S. Asian youth, with a dropout rate of 4 percent, had the lowest dropout rate among all racial and ethnic groups in 2004. Note from webmaster: then why haven't Asians dropped out in massive numbers like Hispanics? Many of them too never attended American schools nor had their immigrant parents. Data from http://www.childtrendsdatabank.org/indicators/1HighSchoolDropout.cfm/
SAT Scores Dip Slightly in a More Diverse Field
August 29, 2007 extract New York Times
Average reading and math scores on the SAT test declined slightly this year, as the number of high school students taking the standardized exam grew larger and more diverse than ever, according to a report released yesterday by the College Board on the high school class of 2007.
The average score on the critical reading part of the SAT, which used to be known as the verbal test, was 502 out of a possible score of 800 - a decline of one point from last year, but also the lowest showing in reading in 13 years. In math the score for 2007 dropped to 515, and the average dropped three points in two consecutive years to 494.
"the increase in the number of traditionally underrepresented minority and low-income students taking the test played a role...(and)...new requirement in Maine that all high school seniors take the exam, including those who would not in the past have viewed themselves as college bound." Officials further said, "the declines from 2006 to 2007 as statistically insignificant...More minority students took the SAT than ever before, and they are holding their own...
But the data also showed most minority and low-income students continuing to lag significantly behind white and affluent students. The average score for students who planned to apply for financial aid in college was 501 in critical reading and 508 in math; the average score for those who did not intend to apply for aid was 530 in critical reading and 548 in math.
Black students on average scored 433 in critical reading and 429 in math; the averages for Puerto Rican students were 459 and 454; and those for white students were 527 and 534. Comment: while we get the usual excuses of access, poverty, etc. when the case is obvious: lower scoring blacks and Hispanics with much lower IQs than whites and Asians will drag down the whole system. To further quote the Times,
"the overall results "really foreshadow what the future will look like" as the nation's student population diversifies and college attendance rises. Three years ago, only a third of the students taking the SAT were members of minorities, he said, compared with 39 percent this year. "Within 10 years, we are likely to see no majority group taking the SATs."
But idiot politicians think this is great, "Even with recent declines in average scores, the broad trend is healthy, Mr. Basili said. More students are being encouraged to go to college, which prepares them for the more sophisticated jobs being created in the economy."
In New York, Richard Mills, the state education commissioner, said the number of Hispanic students taking the SAT in the state had increased by 15 percent and the number of black students by almost 10 percent from 2006 to 2007.
The average scores among New York State students in the class of 2007 were also moderately lower than in 2006: 491 in critical reading and 505 in math...Others questioned the College Board's explanations for the decline in scores this year, along with a more significant drop last year.
Average scores for the class of 2006, the first group to take the new three-part test that includes a writing section, showed the largest decline in 31 years: five points in critical reading and two in math.
"The 10-year trend shows math scores steadily rising and critical reading scores moderately rising until the new test was introduced, and suddenly they plunged," said Robert Schaeffer, public education director for FairTest, which opposes the broad use of standardized testing.
Since the diversity of students taking the SAT was also increasing as scores advanced over the last decade, Mr. Schaeffer said it made no sense to argue that diversity was the cause of the recent declines. He said also that the new test might have been more difficult in recent years. "The answer they are giving doesn't fit the data," he said."
Unless of coarse someone was tampering with the earlier scores to make them look better. "Figures released this month by ACT, a rival college entrance exam that is more popular in the Midwest, showed a slight performance increase for the class of 2007."
Statewide SAT scores drop Georgia ranked 46th, same as last year
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution 08/28/07
Some metro Atlanta school systems posted surprisingly large declines on the latest SAT, even as the state's ranking on the popular college entrance exam held steady at No. 46. Several metro counties saw average SAT scores plummet by double digits, including 17 points in Gwinnett County, 19 points in DeKalb and 35 points in Henry, according to data released Tuesday by the state Department of Education. Of the 11 metro school systems with more than one high school, nine saw declines in their average scores this year...
Quoting public officials:
"We just don't know what happened and when you look at how we did on other tests, it doesn't make much sense." The state's overall scores fell five points to 1472...Everybody else in the nation did worse, too. Nationally, average math, reading and writing SAT score fell seven points to 1511, according to the College Board...
Instead of the obvious, they blame the test:
Last year's scores on the debut test marked the sharpest drop in 31 years, a decline the College Board attributed to some students taking the test once instead of twice. Students generally fare better on the second try. But this second year of declining figures has critics talking. "The test is exhausting and fundamentally flawed," said Bob Schaeffer, public education director for Fair-Test, a Massachusetts-based group that often opposes standardized testing.
Here is the real truth, sort of:
Officials of the College Board, the nonprofit organization that owns the exam, said the national declines were not statistically significant and attributed the drops to a larger and more diverse pool of test-takers. In Georgia, about 69 percent of all graduating high school seniors took the exam...
In other words far more non-whites (blacks, Hispanics, illegal aliens), all proven and chronic under performers, formed a larger percentage of the population taking the test. And that number will increase.
Most Students in Big Cities Lag Badly in Basic Science
November 16, 2006 extracts New York Times
A least half of eighth graders tested in science failed to demonstrate even a basic understanding of the subject in 9 of 10 major cities, and fourth graders, the only other group tested, fared little better...The outcome of those tests, part of the National Assessment of Educational Progress, often called the nation"s report card, showed that student performance in urban public schools was not only poor but also far short of science scores in the nation as a whole...
According to a report accompanying the scores, this meant they lacked the skills and reasoning needed to learn science, and could not read simple charts or follow elementary experiments. A similar definition, though with expectations of a higher level of skill, applied to eighth graders...
Another innovation for the 2007-8 school year is that under the No Child Left Behind Act, public schools across the country must begin testing students in science at least once from Grades 3 to 8. But the results of these tests, like those of New York's, will not determine whether schools have made sufficient progress under the law, which counts only reading and math to determine a school's standing.
While states use a hodgepodge of tests to measure student achievement, the national assessment is the only exam given to students nationwide. The science test - in earth, physical and life sciences - was given in early 2005 to 280,000 students, including an extra 30,000 at public schools in the 10 cities, which had volunteered so that they could get a comparative snapshot of performance.
The scores were grouped in four categories, from below basic to advanced. The results prompted the Council of the Great City Schools, which represents the nation's largest school districts, to call for national standards in science, and in reading and math as well...
...the National Science Teachers Association, who wrote some of the questions asked on the national assessment, said he found the test results "extremely disappointing...There's no way these kids are going to be able to survive in our technological society...the results suggested that performance was influenced more by the disparities associated with race and income than by whether students attended school in cities or in other settings, said Darvin M. Winick, chairman of the National Assessment Governing Board, which oversees the test.
For example, while Atlanta was below the median in the ranking of urban performance, its white fourth graders not only did better on the exam than did 86 percent of fourth graders across the country but also outperformed the nation's white fourth graders as a whole, who reached only the 62nd percentile. At the same time, the city's black fourth graders were in the bottom 22 percent of fourth graders nationwide - two points below the national average for blacks.
Only in Austin, Houston and Charlotte did black and Latino fourth graders score higher than similar students in the nation as a whole. Still, their scores were in the bottom 25 percent to 32 percent of all students taking the exam.
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