Tag Archives: outcomes

New Rankings Should Lead to New, Better Conversations

While Education Week’s annual Quality Counts report is just one of many K-12 state rankings out there, it tends to get a lot of attention because it’s more accessible and easier to interpret that data directly from, say, the U.S. Census Bureau or the National Center for Education Statistics. The latest edition of that report was just released, which means we’re about to see a bevy of questionably accurate news articles, accusations, and assertions crop up in the near future. In the meantime, we can talk a little about the latest results and what they may or may not tell us. Some of you may remember that the Education Policy Center spent some time talking about Education Week’s 2016 Quality Counts report in a recent paper on Colorado school finance. Here’s a refresher on last year’s report: Published annually by Education Week, this report ranks states on “chance for success,” academic achievement, and school finance, with ratings in each of these categories consisting of both an overall grade and a number of more granular rankings. The 2016 report, which relied upon 2013 data, ranked Colorado 37th overall in the area of school finance. As some interest groups have reported, the […]

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A Breakthrough in Building Student Brain Power for Colorado Success?

Maybe this isn’t the best time to bring up the subject — what, with the hot summertime sun baking our brain cells and the new school year still many weeks away for most kids. But I wanted to let you know about a Colorado nonprofit group creatively working to bridge an important gap sometimes overlooked in the world of education policy. Listen to Cognitive First Children’s Campaign founder and executive director Larry Hargrave explain on an iVoices podcast how his group seeks to make brain skills testing and intervention resources more accessible to Colorado students:

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Independence Institute Highlights Rural Colorado School Performance

There are plenty of kids in Colorado who live out in the country or in remote small towns. I don’t know many of them myself. Yet while I’m sure they have their own challenges in learning and education, they don’t get as much attention as those of us who live in and around the big city of Denver. That’s part of the reason why my friends in the Education Policy Center put together a project looking at the academic performance of Colorado’s rural school districts, compared with the numbers of poor and non-white students they serve. The author of the newly-released Assessing Colorado Rural Public School Performance (PDF) is Paul Mueller, who spent the summer working in our offices. (Just in case you were wondering, I didn’t see much of Paul, because I spent much of my summer months off school playing outdoors rather than visiting the Independence Institute.) Anyway, for those of you who don’t have the time to read Paul’s paper, you can listen to him and Pam Benigno talk about the findings of the report – including a couple school districts that succeeded at “beating the odds” despite high-poverty or high-minority student populations – on an iVoices […]

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