- The most important number is that for the second year in a row, Deborah Gist's RIDE met only one of her 33 "Performance Measures and Goals" for the state. This year the number "nearly" meeting the goal (within 2%) went from 1 to zero. Performance in 14 of the measures declined. These goals were always unrealistic, so it is sort of unfair to hold RIDE to them, but the confidence with which the goals were issued was an important rhetorical club for reformers, so they don't get a pass now.
- The one goal they did meet comfortably both years, this year by 14.3%, was for graduates enrolled in college gaining a year of college credit within two years of graduation. Of kids getting into an "institution of higher learning," apparently 82.6% are "college and career ready" right now. This suggests that all the rhetoric about college readiness distorts the true situation -- kids getting all the way to college and flunking out is not the crux of our problems.
Providence's high schools seem to be recovering from the horrific Brady-era slump. Updating my personal benchmark of number of neighborhood high schools with over 50% in reading:
- 2008: 3/8
- 2009: 5/9
- 2010: 4/8
- 2011: 1/8
- 2012: 1/8 2013: 5/7
Yeah, cutscores are bogus, but my sense is that getting more than half the kids roughly on grade level constitutes a palpable shift in a school.
The Brady administration did great harm to Providence's high schools -- this confirms it.