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    School choice and perfect information

    I was at a secret meeting in Texas at the end of last week, so I have not had a chance to comment on a recent article written by Lindsay Wagner of NC Policy Watch, “Who will hold voucher schools accountable?”  The thrust of Ms. Wagner’s argument is that…
    Terry Stoops, June 24, 2013
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    Durham gets meaningless AdvancED blessing

    AdvancED announced that the Durham Public Schools is on the road to receiving full accreditation.  As you may recall, AdvancED is the same accreditation outfit that threatened to revoke Wake County Schools accreditation for reasons that had nothing to do with the performance of schools in the district. Speaking of performance, let's take a look at the performance of schools in Durham last year (see table below).  Without a doubt, state test results suggest that Durham has a handful of excellent schools.  It also has 17 schools, not including Lakeview and DPL, that fail to get at least 60 percent of its students at or above grade level on state tests (see Performance Composite).  The state categorizes these schools as "Low performing" and "Priority" schools (see ABC Status).  Apparently, the AdvancED folks do not have a problem with this.  Indeed, AdvancED did not think twice about accrediting the Halifax County Schools, one of the lowest performing districts in the state. Once again, it is proof that AdvancED accreditation does not mean much about the quality of the schools in a district.  Credit the General Assembly for creating an alternative.
    Terry Stoops, September 22, 2011
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    Georgia law raises school accreditation stakes

    From Education Week, A newly signed law in Georgia that gives the governor the power to remove school board members in a district that does not have full accreditation is bringing fresh scrutiny to the role of AdvancED, a private agency that accredits schools in that state and 48…
    Terry Stoops, April 26, 2011