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Re: [nyceducationnews] NY state's RTTT application

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  • deealpert
    NYSED lost a lot of State money used to fund its various networks (w/colleges and universities; from the BOCES, etc.) and is using the various new technical
    Message 1 of 2 , Jun 1, 2010
      NYSED lost a lot of State money used to fund its various networks (w/colleges and universities; from the BOCES, etc.) and is using the various new technical assistance centers and other non-NYSED "consultants" to keep the prior folks employed via RttT.

      I once read of an evaluation re some of these networks and tried to get a copy of it.  ROTFL!  The university involved couldn't find a copy; the NYSED official (who was also affiliated with that University) said it was out of print, and of course, although he was listed as the author, he just couldn't manage to find a copy of his own paper.

      In the special ed. area, NYSED had a USDOE state improvement grant with 2 goals (NYSED had put these in its application):  a) to decrease the over-representation of minority kids in special ed., and b) to decrease the score gap between kids w/disabilities and those without.  The evaluation of this expensive program was a stitch.  Wading through 110+ pages of flow charts, pie charts, tables, lists of meetings, conferences, seminars and consultations, one found the actual data buried near the end.  The program did not decrease the over-representation of minorities in special ed. at all and did not decrease the score gap at all.  However, the fabulously fatuous evaluation had stunningly fantastic reviews re how the paid participants (from universities, colleges, districts, etc.) just loved the whole thing.  You had "survey" results of adults' feelings re this with N=3 and other "valid" data.  It was truly appalling.  NYSED's summary of this debacle patted itself on the fanny for the wonderful results (from the paid adults) something fierce.  When I pointed out to some feds that this whole thing represented a complete waste of federal funds ... the evaluations disappeared from the university's web site.

      NYSED neither audits nor monitors what districts actually do with any serious federal funds, as has been found by the USDOE OIG on numerous occasions over the past 2 decades.  You can be assured that all that will happen with this RttT grant is that folks at NYSED who get schmeared for IT contracts and purchases will continue to be so schmeared;  favored colleges and universities will continue having their staff paid to do useless work; a lot of retired district superintendents will get paid for assisting districts, although there is no objective data they didn't manipulate showing they were competent; the BOCES will continue being fully funded and, at the same time, will still have all serious reporting and accountability requirements waived for them by NYSED, and when all is said and done, there will be a new look to the same old crap.  Honest.

      As for evaluations for teachers of kids w/disabilities, these will be a joke.  The ones for severely disabled kids already are.  For ELLs they'll use the NYSESLAT, which they use now, and which is individually administered by teachers with no meaningful outside verification of their ratings.

      The new tests will be a hoot.  With no independent audit and verification of the tests' cut scores and grading, ... fuggedaboutdit.

      Ultimately, the NAEP scores may improve a bit, in concert with the rest of the country, because NYSED has signalled to districts that they can screw around with granting test mods and accoms to all sorts of kids.  However, SAT scores, which NYSED and districts cannot manipulate, will not significantly and meaningfully increase and the percentage of NYS high school graduates who require remediation in college will either remain the same or increase.

      Remind me to write about how NYSED screwed around with the allegedly objective evaluation of schools' and districts' and BOCES' and private providers' SES (supplementary educational services, a/k/a afterschool tutoring) programs which had to be offered to kids in schools which flunked AYP.  The RFP, which I've archived, is a hoot!  NYSED stood on its head to insure that the public never, never, never was able to find out how well or poorly any public outfits' programs did as compared with any of the private providers, citing the most specious confidentiality reasons possible. 

      Nothing will change except the color of lipstick on the pig.  But it's still going to be a pig.

      Dee Alpert

      Leonie Haimson wrote:

      Lots of new testing, data collection, and other programs of questionable value in NY state’s  new RTTT applications; one of 35 states plus DC that applied in the second round.  Which doesn’t mean that NY won’t win their share of the gravy, but to what end? 

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