New York state's test scores in math were released yesterday, and not surprisingly they were up, up, up. That's not surprising because test scores on state tests almost always go up. That's usually because, over time, teachers and students get used to the test format and better learn how to prepare for the assessments. But that doesn't mean the kiddos are actually learning more math. And sure enough, the gains were widespread. Students in New York City did better, but so did students in each of the other big cities, and the state as a whole.
I told the Times as much, and (another surprise!) that has Joel's folks unhappy with me. They are particularly displeased with my comments about the achievement gap which, I'll admit, came through rather garbled in the article. So let me try this again.
NYC officials are making much of the fact that the "achievement gaps" between white and black and white and Hispanic students are closing. Here's how the Times reported it:
There was also evidence that the gap among students of different races was narrowing in a city...