Hiding Behind IP
According to data from the Ohio Department of Education, 82% of Ohio public school students attend school districts that showed academic growth (as defined by the state) during the last school year which was significantly (statistically speaking -- defined as one standard error) above expected (or average) growth.
Add in the students who attended districts within one standard error of the mean and the state can claim that 91% of students attended districts achieving at or above expected growth.
Amazing institutions, these government schools.
So you decide to question the results. Tough luck. The state's value added calculation is protected by IP laws. That's right. The state can make an outrageous claim without being challenged. Nice.
Here is the FAQ that has to calm the concerned -- value added is just like the CPI. Too complicated for the masses, but valid and reliable, nonetheless. Trust them. They are your government, you know.
From the service that assists Ohio with its value added calculation:
The value-added methodology seems complicated. How can people understand the measure?
While the statistical methodology used for value-added analysis is complex, the data produced are valid, reliable and presented in easy-to-read charts and graphs. Understanding this methodology can be compared to understanding the statistics behind the Consumer Price Index (CPI), which measures the change in the cost of living between two periods of time. Few people understand how to calculate the CPI, but many people take advantage of the information and use it to make decisions in their daily lives. If educators understand the information derived from the value-added reports, they can use the information to make sound decisions about improving student achievement.