Friday, September 7

Independent research board to audit DOE data

Following up on its revelation that increasing test scores might have more to do with easier tests than smarter kids, the Daily News now reports that Chancellor Klein is setting up an independent audit bureau to review test data, which historically have been reported by the same city and state education departments being judged by the tests.

The independent Research Partnership for New York City Schools has been in development for the last year, according to its website, which lists members of the bureau's working groups but hasn't been updated in months. I'm pleased to see the DOE taking seriously criticisms that cut to the core of its recent reforms, but Sol Stern of the conservative Manhattan Institute is wise to question whether the bureau's members will be able to evaluate the data impartially, given that many of them have "an interest in what the research will show."

The bureau, which is being supported with private money, will hold a conference Oct. 5 but is likely to take the entire school year to get fully up and running, the Daily News reports.

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