Monday, July 10, 2006

Discrepancies in graduation rates in the news

A recent Editorial Projects in Education Research Center report published by Ed Week on graduation rates points out discrepancies in state graduation rate calculations (by state) and shows the status of efforts to implement a nationally-accepted definition of graduation rates proposed by the National Governors' Association. What the report (and the article linked to this post) reveal is how hard it is to get agreement on, define, and implement what sounds - on the face of it - to be a fairly simple concept. Image the difficulties surrounding dropouts and who gets the "credit" in a high stakes system for that drop out. The last school? What if the student was only there a week? Who gets the credit for a graduation if the student spent most of his or her time at one school and then switches to another, less effective school in the last semester?

These difficulties are all over high stakes data analysis.


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