Friday, August 24, 2007

Epistemology and Hoxby

As the Anti-Positivist, I do not believe that essential knowledge can be obtained via the positivist/empiricist approach, but that does not necessarily invalidate all empirical studies. I have, in other places, criticized studies by Hoxby, while on this blog, I have submitted for your review studies by her fellow econometricians and statisticians, such as Dr. Eric Hanushek, and others.

Read the note below, as well as the linked studies, and draw your own conclusions.

I think you will agree that the following topic (success of NYC Charter schools) deserves a dedicated post.

Caroline Hoxby is a MIT-trained, Harvard economics professor and Director of the Economics of Education Program at the National Bureau of Economic Research and a recognized expert on the econometrics of the U.S. public education system. She recently concluded an exhaustive study on Charter schools in the NY public school system and her findings are stunning.

The struggle to reform public education in NYC--one of the worst performing in the nation--is the most fascinating study in education transformation in decades, and illustrates the chasm that exists between the Education Sector and reality. It was only until NYC mayor, Michael Bloomberg (a results-driven former CEO), reached beyond the career "educator" ranks and chose a retired corporate CEO as schools chancellor (equivalent to our superintendent) that real change could take place (i.e.. taking control from the unions).

Here’s a good article on the study and NYC Charter Schools (by a founder of two of them).

Prof. Hoxby's bio. She is a well-respected empirical researcher.

Here's a link to the Harvard Gazette profile on the study, which was begun in 2004 in response to the AFT's sham study indicting charter schools as inferior to their mob-run public counterparts.

And to her
papers on the web.

Here's a link to her
final study on NYC Charter Schools vs. Public Schools.

...and the homepage of the Harvard PEPG (Program on Education Policy and Governance)

And, finally, here's
one additional study that you'll love this one--don't laugh too hard when you see the title. If you can get past the densely academic sections (I-III) it's pretty insightful.

Merry Christmas in August!

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