Elnaz quoted in Tribune article

Excerpted from the Trib’s story, School closings: A closer look at CPS strategy, Elnaz is quoted in the fourth paragraph shown below (italics), commenting on the use of Value Added scores in determining which schools to close.

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At the 25 schools whose students are being moved to a school at the same performance level, CPS considered additional criteria.

Adam Anderson, CPS’ officer of portfolio, planning and strategy, said the district looked for the receiving school to outscore the closing school on at least three of four measures: a higher percentage score within the performance rating; composite meets or exceeds score on the ISAT; an improvement metric for reading; and another one for math.

With two of the four measures dealing directly with improvement, schools with solid scores that dipped slightly in some cases fared worse than poorly performing schools that could show improvement.

Elnaz Moshfeghian of Open Data Institute, which helps produce the “Schoolcuts” blog to study the data surrounding CPS’ school closings, said a closer look at that controversial improvement metric shows it changes for schools year to year.

“It’s been called a noisy number,” Moshfeghian said. “It is not a reliable and stable school metric and should not be half the reason why one school stays open and the other closes. You wonder why it’s being used at all.”

Anderson said the improvement, or value-added, score did not carry significant weight as the district decided which schools to close.

“Value-added scores alone would not have made a school higher-performing,” he said. “If you look at total weighting, in our best three of four measure it’s much further weighted toward ISAT measures than value added.”

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Full story at http://trib.in/114lsUl

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