Monthly Archives: October 2011

Why I did TFA, and why you shouldn’t

There was a time, not very long ago, when I was an active volunteer alumni recruiter for TFA. And, as you might expect, I was great at it. One year, I think it was 1998, I did a recruitment session … Continue reading

Posted in book proposal, Teach For America, tfa rants | 217 Comments

The Vindication Of P.S. 84 Part III

In the first two parts of this series I examined how the New York City progress report system is less about measuring a school’s quality and more about comparing schools.  The number of comparisons that occurs to determine the ‘progress’ … Continue reading

Posted in Research, Tom | 4 Comments

The Vindication Of P.S. 84 Part II

In the previous post I demonstrated how the New York City progress reports are distorted by a inappropriate use of ‘standard deviation’ to unfairly punish schools that score slightly below average on certain metrics when all the scores are very … Continue reading

Posted in Research, Tom | 5 Comments

The Vindication Of P.S. 84 Part I

I was inspired to get to the bottom of the New York City school progress report grades after reading this story from the New York Times Schoolbook website about P.S. 84 which was one of the thirty F rated schools … Continue reading

Posted in Research, Tom | 18 Comments

When Bad Progress Reports Happen To Good Schools — Change ’em!

New York City’s Department of Education recently released their ‘progress reports’ for all the middle and elementary schools for the 2010-2011 school year. For each school they have a complicated formula that assigns up to 60 points for ‘progress’, up … Continue reading

Posted in Teach For America | 2 Comments

Readin’ > ‘Rithmetic

Something that nearly every adult has wondered about, but is scared to say it out loud is “Is knowing math really that important?” They don’t say it out loud because they fear that someone, possibly a math teacher like me, … Continue reading

Posted in book proposal, Teach For America | 15 Comments

A Newbie’s Guide To My Blog

If this is your first time here, Welcome! Over the past 3 years my posts have fallen into different categories, which you can access by locating the ‘categories’ menu on the right pane, near the bottom. ‘Teaching Advice’ is what … Continue reading

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