May 2013

Not much educational data is yet improving classroom instruction

A May 28, 2013 blog post from the Michael and Susan Dell Foundation by Micah Sagebiel notes that after a decade of collecting and analyzing education data, since the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, that classroom instruction is no better for it. So far, all this education data has mostly been used for “accountability” purposes, […]


Education of girls and youth literacy varies widely in Africa, new educational data on developing nations

Last week on May 23, 2013 the Global Partnership for Education launched an Open Data Project that consolidates education indicators from 29 developing nations, from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe. The World Bank Development Data Group and the aid data organization Development Gateway are supporting it. The data posted so far is uneven and scanty. For many nations, a lot of data is […]


The number of high-poverty schools increases by about 60 percent

Poverty is getting so concentrated in America that one out of five public schools was classified as as a “high-poverty” school in 2011 by the U.S.  Department of Education. To win this unwelcome designation, 75 percent or more of an elementary, middle or high school’s students qualified for free or reduced-price lunch. About a decade […]


Public-school spending dropped for the first time

The Census Department reported on May 21, 2013 that spending in public elementary, middle and high schools fell 0.4 percent in fiscal 2011 to $10, 560 per student compared with fiscal 2010. That was the first ever spending drop in public education since the Census Department began tracking this figure in 1977. Here is the press […]


More tuition inflation

This just in: colleges are unable to rein in their costs and keep hiking their tuition bills. For in-state students at public 4-year universities, tuition and fees increased 7 percent after adjusting for inflation between this academic year (2012-13) and the 2010-2011 academic year. During the same period, tuition and fees at all 4-year nonprofit institutions increased […]


Data on teacher absenses, sick days and substitutes

On May 16, 2013, Choice Media, an online education news service that is critical of teachers unions,  posted a provocative story, What’s Making Asbury Park Teachers Sick?.  They collected data from a few New Jersey towns, through a Freedom of Information Act request, and found that Asbury Park’s teachers averaged more than 18 absences a […]


Data on resilience

Can resilience be taught? On May 3, 2013 Bruce Rogers of Forbes posted The Power of Resilience: Study Shows How Horatio Alger Association Scholarships Make A Difference about a 2012 study by NORC’s Gregory C. Wolniak and Zachary Gebhardt at the University of Chicago. The authors found that low-income students, many of whose parents were drug addicts or […]


Data on the children of Tiger Mothers

On May 8 in Poor Little Tiger Cub, Slate wrote about a March 2013 study of the children of Tiger Mothers by Su Yeong Kim at the University of Texas. Kim studied 444 Chinese American families (what an unlucky number!) and concluded that the children of Amy Chua-like tiger parents had lower GPAs and educational attainment. These […]


An explanation of when $20,000 is not enough to teach a student.

New York City may spend more per student than most districts in the United States ($19,597 during the 2009-2010 school year according to the U.S. Census), but one education scholar’s number crunching shows that the city’s schools are underfunded. Bruce D. Baker, a Rutgers education professor, posted Class Size & Funding Inequity in NY State […]


Do U.S. students lag behind the rest of the world?

In a May 3, 2013 HuffPo story, ‘We’re Number Umpteenth!': Debunking the Persistent Myth of Lagging U.S. Schools, Alfie Kohn takes issue with the conventional wisdom that American students are slipping behind their peers abroad. Kohn is partly right. The international ranking tables are largely a reflection of how much poverty you have in your nation. Countries […]


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