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 Pub Number  Title  Date
REL 2016119 Stated Briefly: How methodology decisions affect the variability of schools identified as beating the odds
This "Stated Briefly" report is a companion piece that summarizes the results of another report of the same name. Schools that show better academic performance than would be expected given characteristics of the school and student populations are often described as "beating the odds" (BTO). State and local education agencies often attempt to identify such schools as a means of identifying strategies or practices that might be contributing to the schools' relative success. Key decisions on how to identify BTO schools may affect whether schools make the BTO list and thereby the identification of practices used to beat the odds. The purpose of this study was to examine how a list of BTO schools might change depending on the methodological choices and selection of indicators used in the BTO identification process. This study considered whether choices of methodologies and type of indicators affect the schools that are identified as BTO. The three indicators were (1) type of performance measure used to compare schools, (2) the types of school characteristics used as controls in selecting BTO schools, and (3) the school sample configuration used to pool schools across grade levels. The study applied statistical models involving the different methodologies and indicators and documented how the lists schools identified as BTO changed based on the models. Public school and student data from one midwest state from 2007-08 through 2010-11 academic years were used to generate BTO school lists. By performing pairwise comparisons among BTO school lists and computing agreement rates among models, the project team was able to gauge the variation in BTO identification results. Results indicate that even when similar specifications were applied across statistical methods, different sets of BTO schools were identified. In addition, for each statistical method used, the lists of BTO schools identified varied with the choice of indicators. Fewer than half of the schools were identified as BTO in more than one year. The results demonstrate that different technical decisions can lead to different identification results.
4/6/2016
WWC SSR232 WWC Review of the Report "The Short-Term Effects of the Kalamazoo Promise Scholarship on Student Outcomes"
Researchers examined the impacts of the Kalamazoo Promise Scholarship program on academic and behavioral outcomes of students in grades 9–12 in Kalamazoo Public Schools (KPS). The Kalamazoo Promise Scholarship program offers college scholarships to graduating high school students in the KPS district. The percentage of tuition and fees covered is dependent on how long a student has attended school in the district. Students attending since kindergarten receive the full 100% of tuition and fees. Students attending since ninth grade receive a scholarship covering 65%. Students who enter KPS in tenth grade or later are not eligible to receive the scholarship. To assess the program’s impacts, researchers compared the academic and behavioral outcomes of students in high school, before and after the Kalamazoo Promise Scholarship program was introduced. Student outcomes that were included in the study were: student grade point averages, whether students earned course credits, the number of course credits earned, incidence of and number of days spent in suspension, and incidence of and number of days spent in in-school detention. This study uses a quasi-experimental design in which baseline equivalence of the groups cannot be demonstrated. Therefore, the research does not meet WWC group design standards.
8/26/2014
NCES 2014103 Problem Solving Skills of 15-year-olds: Results from PISA 2012
This Data Point uses data from the 2012 administration of the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) problem solving assessment. PISA is an international assessment that measures 15-year-old students' reading, mathematics, and science literacy and, in 2012, general problem solving skills and financial literacy. PISA is coordinated by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), an intergovernmental organization of industrialized countries. The PISA computer-based assessment of problem solving assessed how well prepared students are to confront the kinds of problems that are encountered almost daily in 21st century life.
7/25/2014
NCES 2014102 Financial Literacy of 15-year-olds: Results from PISA 2012
This Data Point uses data from the 2012 administration of the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) financial literacy assessment. PISA is an international assessment that measures 15-year-old students' reading, mathematics, and science literacy and, in 2012, general problem solving and financial literacy. PISA is coordinated by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), an intergovernmental organization of industrialized countries. The PISA financial literacy assessment assessed students’ knowledge and understanding of fundamental elements of the financial world, including financial concepts, products, and risks, as well as their ability to apply what they know to real-life situations involving financial issues and decisions.
7/9/2014
NCES 2014028 Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2012 U.S. Public-use Data Files
The PISA 2012 U.S. public-use data files and documentation include the following: U.S. national PISA 2012 data in ASCII text format, including variables unique to the United States; SPSS and SAS control files for reading the data and producing SPSS and SAS system files; codebooks; illustrative code for merging student and school-level files; a Read Me file, and a Quick Guide.

Users of this data should also consult the PISA 2012 U.S. Technical Report and User Guide available for viewing and downloading at http://nces.ed.gov/pubsearch/pubsinfo.asp?pubid=2014025.
5/15/2014
NCES 2014055 Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2012 Massachusetts Restricted-use Data File
This CD-ROM contains PISA 2012 restricted-use data for Massachusetts, including variables unique to U.S. data collection. Massachusetts is one of three states to participate separately from the nation in 2012. The CD-ROM includes the complete MA data file, a codebook, and a cross-walk to assist in merging with other public datasets, such as the Common Core of Data (CCD) and Private School Survey (PSS). A restricted-use license must be obtained before access to the data is granted. Click on the restricted-use license link below for more details.
4/16/2014
NCES 2014056 Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2012 Connecticut Restricted-use Data File
This CD-ROM contains PISA 2012 restricted-use data for Connecticut, including variables unique to U.S. data collection. Connecticut is one of three states to participate separately from the nation in 2012. The CD-ROM includes the complete CT data file, a codebook, and a cross-walk to assist in merging with other public datasets, such as the Common Core of Data (CCD) and Private School Survey (PSS). A restricted-use license must be obtained before access to the data is granted. Click on the restricted-use license link below for more details.
4/16/2014
NCES 2014057 Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2012 Florida Restricted-use Data File
This CD-ROM contains PISA 2012 restricted-use data for Florida, including variables unique to U.S. data collection. Florida is one of three states to participate separately from the nation in 2012. The CD-ROM includes the complete FL data file, a codebook, and a cross-walk to assist in merging with other public datasets, such as the Common Core of Data (CCD) and Private School Survey (PSS). A restricted-use license must be obtained before access to the data is granted. Click on the restricted-use license link below for more details.
4/16/2014
NCES 2014024 Performance of U.S. 15-Year-Old Students in Mathematics, Science, and Reading Literacy in an International Context-First Look at PISA 2012
First Look at PISA 2012 reports average scale scores and the percentage of 15-year-old students reaching selected proficiency levels, comparing the United States with other participating education systems. Results for the three U.S. states are also reported.
12/3/2013
WWC QR20005 Quick Review: "Expanding College Opportunities for High-Achieving, Low Income Students"
The study is a randomized controlled trial. As such, it could potentially meet WWC evidence standards without reservations. However, there was attrition in the overall study sample, and more information is needed to determine whether attrition rates were similar in the intervention and comparison groups. A more thorough review (forthcoming) will explore this issue further and will determine the final study rating.
4/17/2013
NCES 2012046 Higher Education: Gaps in Access and Persistence Study
The Higher Education: Gaps in Access and Persistence Study is a congressionally-mandated statistical report that documents the scope and nature of gaps in access and persistence in higher education by sex and race/ethnicity. The report presents 46 indicators grouped under seven main topic areas: (1) demographic context; (2) characteristics of schools; (3) student behaviors and afterschool activities; (4) academic preparation and achievement; (5) college knowledge; (6) postsecondary education; and (7) postsecondary outcomes and employment. In addition, the report contains descriptive multivariate analyses of variables that are associated with male and female postsecondary attendance and attainment.
8/28/2012
REL 2012108 A Descriptive Analysis of Enrollment and Achievement Among English Language Learner Students in New Jersey
This report describes enrollment and achievement trends of LEP students in New Jersey public schools between 2002/03 and 2008/09. It documents achievement gaps between LEP and general education students in language arts literacy and math, as measured by statewide assessments administered in grades 3, 4, 8, and 11. The study's main findings include:

  • LEP students in New Jersey spoke 187 languages in 2008/09, up from 151 in 2002/03. In 2008/09, Spanish (spoken by 66.8 percent of LEP students in the state) had the most speakers, followed by Arabic (2.6 percent), Korean (2.5 percent), and Portuguese (2.0 percent).
  • The achievement of LEP students increased in both language arts literacy and mathematics in elementary, middle, and high school. As a result, the achievement gap between LEP students and general education students in grades 3 and 4 narrowed in both language arts literacy and math, and the achievement gap in grades 8 and 11 narrowed in language arts literacy but widened in math.
4/24/2012
REL 2012127 A Descriptive Analysis of Enrollment and Achievement Among English Language Learner Students in Pennsylvania
The number of English language learner (ELL) students in Pennsylvania public schools rose 24.7 percent from 2002/03 to 2008/09, whereas total student enrollment fell 2.4 percent. During that period, ELL student enrollment increased from 2.1 percent of the student population in 2002/03 to 2.7 percent in 2008/09. These figures are of concern to educators because of the large achievement gaps between ELL and non-ELL students and the need to meet the No Child Left Behind Act goal of bringing all students to proficiency by 2014.

This report describes enrollment and achievement trends of ELL students in Pennsylvania public schools between 2002/03 and 2008/09. It documents achievement gaps between ELL and general education students in reading, math, and writing, as measured by statewide assessments administered in grades 3–8 and 11. The study's main findings include:

  • ELL students in Pennsylvania spoke 211 languages in 2008/09, up from 138 in 2002/03. In 2008/09, Spanish (spoken by 57.6 percent of ELL students in the state) had the most speakers, followed by English dialects (7.0 percent), Chinese (3.6 percent), Vietnamese (3.2 percent), Arabic (2.6 percent), and Russian (2.3 percent). ELL students speaking "other" languages (languages other than the 18 most common in the state) accounted for 12.2 percent of the ELL student population in 2008/09.
  • During the period studied, the overall achievement gap in reading, math, and writing between ELL and non-ELL students increased in all grades studied except for grade 3, where the achievement gap narrowed in reading and math.
  • The achievement gap between ELL and non-ELL students was 21–55 percentage points in reading, math, and writing every year during the period studied.
4/24/2012
REL 2012128 A Descriptive Analysis of Enrollment and Achievement Among English Language Learner Students in Maryland
The number of limited English proficient (LEP) students in Maryland public schools rose 73 percent from 2002/03 to 2008/09, whereas total student enrollment rose only 2.1 percent. During that period, LEP student enrollment increased from 3.0 percent of total student enrollment in 2002/03 to 5.2 percent in 2008/09. These figures are of concern to educators because of the large achievement gaps between LEP and non-LEP students nationally and the need to meet the No Child Left Behind Act goal of bringing all students to proficiency by 2014.

This report, describes enrollment and achievement trends of LEP students in Maryland public schools between 2002/03 and 2008/09. It documents large achievement gaps, ranging from 11 to 49 percentage points, between LEP and non-LEP students in reading and math, as measured by statewide assessments administered in grades 3–8 and 10. The study's main findings include:

  • From 2002/03 to 2008/09, Spanish speakers accounted for the largest percentage of LEP students, peaking at 59.9 percent in 2004/05. In 2008/09, Spanish (spoken by 56.8 percent of LEP students) had the most speakers, followed by French (3.3 percent), Chinese (3.2 percent), Vietnamese (2.3 percent), and Korean (2.2 percent). LEP students speaking "other" languages (languages other than the five most common in the state) accounted for 32.1 percent of LEP students in 2008/09.
  • Between 2002/03 and 2008/09, LEP students accounted for a larger percentage of enrollment in elementary school (grades K–5) than in middle school (grades 6–8) or in high school (grades 9–12). In 2008/09, LEP students accounted for 8.2 percent of elementary school enrollment, 2.7 percent of middle school enrollment, and 2.5 percent of high school enrollment.
  • During the period studied, the percentage of LEP students scoring at the proficient or advanced level in reading and math increased in all grades studied (grades 3–8 and 10). However, the achievement gap in both subjects between LEP and non-LEP students ranged from 11 to 49 percentage points each year.
  • During the period studied, the achievement gap in reading and math between LEP and non-LEP students narrowed in grades 3–5 and grade 10; the achievement gap narrowed in reading in grades 6–8 but widened in math in grades 7 and 8.
4/24/2012
REL 2012131 A Descriptive Analysis of Enrollment and Achievement Among English Language Learner Students in the District of Columbia
The number of English language learner (ELL) students in District of Columbia public schools rose 1.8 percent from 2002/03 to 2008/09, whereas total student enrollment fell 6.3 percent. ELL student enrollment increased from 7.7 percent of total student enrollment in 2002/03 to 8.4 percent in 2008/09. These figures are of concern to educators because of the need to meet the No Child Left Behind Act goal of bringing all students to proficiency by 2014 and because nationally ELL students' achievement lags behind that of non-ELL students.

This report describes enrollment trends between 2002/03 and achievement trends between 2006/07 and 2008/09 among ELL students in District of Columbia public schools. It documents the achievement of ELL and non-ELL students in reading and math, as measured by districtwide assessments administered in grades 3–8 and 10. The study's main findings include:

  • From 2005/06 to 2008/09, Spanish speakers accounted for the largest percentage of ELL students, peaking at 74.9 percent in 2005/06. In 2008/09, Spanish (spoken by 60.4 percent of ELL students in the district) had the most speakers, followed by Amharic (2.4 percent), Chinese (2.2 percent), French (1.9 percent), and Vietnamese (1.7 percent). ELL students speaking "other" languages (languages other than the five most common in the district) accounted for 31.5 percent of ELL students in 2008/09.
  • Between 2006/07 and 2008/09, ELL students' performance in reading and math increased in all grades studied (grades 3–8 and 10). The increase ranged from 1.9 to 20.5 percentage points in reading and from 16.7 to 24.0 percentage points in math.
  • During the period studied, in every grade, the performance of ELL students relative to that of non-ELL students was stronger in math than in reading.
  • ELL students' performance was higher than that of non-ELL students in grade 3 reading and in grade 3 and 4 math in every year studied. From 2006/07 to 2008/09, the achievement gap in reading between ELL and non-ELL students widened in grade 8, narrowed in grades 7 and 10, closed in grade 5, and reversed in grade 6 (with ELL students' performance higher than that of non-ELL students). From 2006/07 and 2008/09, the achievement gap in math between ELL and non-ELL students narrowed in grade 7 and reversed in grades 5, 6, 8, and 10.
  • By 2008/09, ELL students' performance in reading was higher than their non-ELL peers in reading in two grades and all but one grade in math. This directly contrasts national trends, where performance is typically 20-30 percentage points higher among non-ELL students than among ELL students.
4/24/2012
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