I’ll have what she’s having.
New York’s latest round of state test results were released last week and the biggest news is the scores posted by Success Academy, the network of twenty-two charter schools throughout New York City run by Eva Moskowitz. Only 29 percent of New York’s kids met the new higher English standards under Common Core. Success more than doubled it with 64 percent meeting the standards. Wait. It gets better. One in three New York City students scored proficient in math, but at Success it was better than nine out of ten.
With admirable restraint, the head of the New York City Charter Center, James Merriman, pronounced the results “remarkable” and attributed the results to Success’ intensive instruction. A lot of schools, including many charter high-fliers, offer high-octane teaching. None come close to matching Success Academy’s results the last two years.
Remarkable? No, these are results that make your jaw hit the floor hard enough to loosen your fillings. Success Academy kids didn’t merely pass the state math test, they destroyed it. For example, 680 fourth graders sat for the state test at seven of Moskowitz’s schools. Care to guess how many earned a “4,” the highest level?
Nearly five freakin’ hundred of them!
No, this is not “remarkable.” This is Secretariat winning the Belmont by thirty-one lengths. It’s Michael Jordan dropping sixty-three points on the Celtics in the playoffs. It’s Tiger Woods demolishing the field and winning the Masters by eighteen strokes.
On the ELA side, Success Academy’s results are not as eye-popping on the surface, but they are perhaps even more noteworthy. It’s easier to move the needle on math, a sequential, largely school-based subject where curriculum and standards are reasonably well aligned and the content of the assessments are at least...