Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Liars, Damned Liars, Statisticians, and Tweed

Yesterday's NY Post reports that the student surveys, those hallowed documents with which they judge all the great improvements of Mayor Mike and Chancellor Joel, were steered out of the hands of students who might have made negative comments:

Among the "suggestions" in the document, posted online by a Department of Education achievement director, was to "keep the surveys away from toxic person(s)," taken to mean troubled students.

Oddly, this follows accusations the teacher surveys were fixed. In my school we were urged to fill out the surveys at a department meeting. Several brand new teachers were dispatched to explain how we should fill out the surveys, and how we would earn more points for the school.

It's funny how these things happen. Anyway, as long as the surveys say the right thing, Chancellor Klein and Mayor Bloomberg are doing a great job. Watch below, as chief "accountability" officer Liebman, the one who literally runs from involved parents, takes a survey and turns it on his head.

Parents chose smaller class size as their number one priority, but Mr. Liebman conflates a whole bunch of other things and moves class size to second. Mayor-for-life Bloomberg and all his underlings are masters at twisting statistics to support their PR.

What's really sad is this--beyond PR they've utterly failed to make schools better. Maybe when a wall collapses and kids come spilling out the front of my school they'll build us an extension. Until them, it's squeeze 'em in, and the largest class sizes in the state. Why reduce class sizes when you can put signs in the subway saying you've already done it?

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