Friday, September 23, 2005

Education: ASU Study Predicts 95 % of Great Lakes Schools Will Be Labeled ‘Failing’ by 2014

qualityg says... Guess which state is slotted for the biggest fall? The results of this study are very troubling. Please see the scenario for Michigan below in Red.

Press Release

Contact: Teri Moblo (517) 203-2940 (email) orAlex Molnar (480) 965-1886 (email)

TEMPE, Ariz. (Wednesday, September 14, 2005) - Fewer schools in the GreatLakes region were labeled “failing” this year. That will change, however, if the federal No Child left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB) continues to be the driving force behind the measurement of school and student success. Mostschools in the region will labeled “failing” by 2014, according to “TheImpact of the Adequate Yearly Progress Requirement of the Federal No ChildLeft Behind Act on the Great Lakes Region,” a study released by the GreatLakes Center for Educational Research and the Education Policy StudiesLaboratory at Arizona State University.

The study is the first multi-state research to use actual state data to predict how schools will fair under No Child Left Behind current AdequateYearly Progress (AYP) requirements. The authors, Edward C. Wiley,University of Colorado-Boulder; William J. Mathis, University of Vermont;and David R. Garcia, Arizona State University, assessed how much gainschools made in 2003-2004 and used these data along with each state’s established growth expectations to predict how many schools will meet the federal requirement of 100 percent proficiency on state high-stakes tests by 2014.

Regardless of the growth expectations set by the Great Lakes states, theresearch findings are clear: Approximately 95 percent of the schools in the Great Lakes region will be labeled “failing” by 2014. The state-by-statepredictions are:

Indiana: Under the best case scenario, it is projected that 54 percent of schools will fail by 2014. Under a more realistic scenario, 80 to 85percent of schools will fail.

Wisconsin: Under the best case scenario in, it is projected that over half of the schools will fail by 2014. Under a more realistic scenario, 84 percent of schools will fail.

Ohio: Under the best case scenario, it is projected that almost half of the schools will fail by 2014. Under a more realistic scenario, close to 80percent of schools will fail.

Minnesota: It is projected that 85 percent of schools will fail by 2014.

Michigan: Under the best case scenario, it is projected that half of the schools will fail by 2014. Under a more realistic scenario, almost everyschool will fail.

Illinois: Under the most optimistic scenario, it is projected that over 65percent of schools will fail by 2014. Under a more realistic scenario, thatnumber is closer to 85 percent.

“It’s fail now or fail later,” said Teri Moblo, Director of the Great LakesCenter for Education Research and Practice. “Under the current system, schools are destined to be labeled as failing and there is no way around it.The question isn’t will schools fail, it’s when will they fail. Withoutincreased flexibility in the AYP requirements and a focus on the underlyingreasons why students do not perform well on such tests, we will continue toinvest huge amounts of time and money in a system where failure isguaranteed.”

The authors point out that AYP measures the success or failure of schoolsand students solely on high stakes test scores in basic academic areas.They point out that the special needs and learning styles of students arenot taken into account; that the impact of poverty and diversity on aschool’s ability to achieve AYP is not addressed; that testing and sanctionsfor not making AYP do not address the underlying causes of poor testperformance; and that in order to meet yearly AYP goals, states are forcedto direct their increasingly limited resources toward the administering andscoring of standardized tests, estimated to cost between $1.9 billion and$5.3 billion for 2002-08.

The study goes on to recommend ways to increase student learning and improve AYP results:
* Develop programs that include families, community, and health providers,and that strengthen childcare, early education, summer and after-schoolactivities, and technical education, among other vital and essentialservices.
* Dedicate adequate funding for remediation and social infrastructure, toovercome disparities and meet student educational needs.
* Create realistic, comprehensive school evaluation systems that involve avariety of evaluation methods.
* Set realistic standards linked to external expectations and grounded inresearch.
* Use aggressive confidence intervals and subgroup sizes to measure rates ofgrowth.
* Modify the standards and growth expectations for special education,non-English speaking, and migratory students.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Planes, Cell Phones and "stinky feet"

Cell Phones on Planes? Many airlines are considering allowing cell phone usage during flights.

No, No and Hell No. I will never fly on an airline that allows cell phone use during flights.

I have been trapped in my seat on numerous occasions while pompous buffoons salespeople try to impress everyone with their mojo before a flight doors are closed. I had one guy sit in front of me kick of his shoes, put them up on the wall (Row 1). Lean all the way back in his chair, sip some wine and start braking orders at his employees on how to do there job.

After ten minutes of this punk rattling on to another caller on hoe rich he was and important he was I just had to enter the conversation. So every time he would talk loud enough for everyone to hear I would answer back. He looked back on occasion and gave me a couple of sneers. I began to pull magazines out very rough so that his seat would rattle from side to side. “Excuse me” didn’t mean to invade your space. He gave another look like the one your Dad would do when he planned on yelling at you after he got off the phone.

Once the doors were closed he finally flipped off his phone and raised his seat. He kept his shoes off and began to talk to the stewardess about the guy behind him causing him grief. The guy behind him just said, “Something Stinks” and received the applause of the others sitting around the jackass.

So no, do not allow cell phone use where I am trapped. If you must do it, put a section way in the back so that when everyone open and closes the bathroom door they will know how important they are in the eyes of a madman.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Leadership - Forbes CEO Forum ---> "Where are the Big 3"

The Forbes CEO Forum 2005
September 19 - 21, 2005Grand HotelMackinac Island, Michigan

Today, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation will be hosting the Forbes CEO Forum for 2005 at Mackinac Island. The list of speakers and moderators is impressive --> click on
Forbes speakers.

The Theme is "Mastering Instability."

qualityg says... Does this mean Michigan's Economy is NOT Stable and we are Out of Control? Will there be charts that show special causes at work?

It’s nice that Governor Granholm plays a role at the session (Forging cross-sector partnerships to revitalize your business). I hope she emphasizes the need for Michigan to capture more non-manufacturing businesses so the state came become more diverse. "Focus Hope" will be an example (does anyone ever wonder why FH is always the example, FH is good but don’t we have any others).

There are usually three other companies that send their CEO or high-ranking leader to these types of sessions. They used to be called the Big 3, strange they are not taking this opportunity for some free exposure. Perhaps they are too busy thinking of another “incentive” program when the 2006 model year goes on sale.

I noticed that Professor Noel Tichy from the University of Michigan would be a moderator for the “Forging cross-sector partnerships to revitalize your business segment.” I have always found Dr. Tichy’s writing interesting and thought provoking. I first became aware of him in the early 90’s when he was hired by then Amertech CEO Bill Weiss to consult on the restructuring and reorganizing of the company. I was hoping he would write a book about this experience, but he chose another leader instead – Jack Welch “ CONTROL YOUR DESTINY OR SOMEONE ELSE WILL.” Perhaps it was Welch who controlled Tichy’s destiny (among many others at GE) by choosing him since Dr. Tichy worked at GE in the mid 80’s as a means to gather application knowledge (I always like it when academia steps out of their office into the real world of working with regular employees and not just the upper echelon).

While Professor Tichy was working at Ameritech he helped institute what was called “Ameritech Breakthrough” sessions. The sessions were modeled after the “Breakout” sessions when he was head of GE’s Leadership Center, the fabled Crotonville, where he led the transformation to action learning at GE. I wrote him a letter during this time asking what was the method that he was going to use to transform Ameritech’s Management style? Surely, he did not believe that senior leaders were changing, it was expected that the lower level ranks would change but not the higher (they never did). I asked other process and behavioral question too. He never answered.

I always wondered why he does not include his time spent at Ameritech in his BIO.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Education - Will Students affected by Katrina be taking state tests? Secretary Margaret Spellings Responds (updated 9/13/05)

MDE what is your position on this question?

I hope for all involved (students, teachers, districts) that whatever path is taken it is in the best interest of the children. Having the students affected by Katrina take the tests and they are not psychologically ready may do long-term harm.

If they do have to take the tests will they be included with the state students as one whole or will they be categorized so the data can be stratified for improvement opportunities.

I'm not sure (perhaps someone will answer), do the states teach different methods for preparing for their state and the federal tests?

updated 9/12/05

MDE spokesman Mr. Martin Ackley stated in today's Detroit Free Press that hurricane victims will be required to take the MEAP test because the federal government requires school s to test 95% of students. But their scores will not be counted towards the school's MEAP scores.

qualityg says... Hopefully this is good news, I would like to hear from some teachers. Comment here or send Email to My gut tells me we should just welcome the students for now and integrate them into a caring and welcoming school system environment. Think big picture and not just short-term rules/goals. The object of school is to ensure "Joy of Learning," not how well I take a test after I've been uprooted from my home.

Please go to School Enrollment - Evacuee Students for the complete story.

updated 9/13/05

U.S. Education Secretary Margaret Spellings (born in Michigan) said Monday that she will ask Congress for authority to "ease" aspects of the federal law governing the education of homeless children.

She has also pledeged to consider waiving parts of the "No Child Left Behind Act," including yearly testing and teacher quality.

For additional comments made by the secretary regarding Hurricane Katrina Students go to Welcome to "Ask the White House" -- an online interactive forum where you can submit questions to Administration officials.

Spellings - Secretary of Education

qualityg says... - This is good information. Teachers notice statement bold above (teacher testing), best get your unions working on this statement.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Leadership & Education --> "qg on GE about MBA @ U of M"

I have a friend whose son just entered the University of Michigan’s MBA program. He was telling me how excited his son was to get his degree and enter the workforce to make money at a big company. He also said that Jeffrey Immelt chairman of General Electric Company spoke at their incoming MBA ceremony. I’m always impressed when schools have big time speakers at the beginning of the year to give the students a sort of jump start to their studies and what lays ahead upon graduation.

Mr. Immelt talked to the class about rising oil prices and the importance of global competition. GE, America’s number one country in terms of wealth, WHOOPS, Wait, that now belongs to Exxon Mobil.

I often wondered why so-called experts in Leadership (i.e., academia) equate a company’s wealth with the success of their Leadership style. AT&T for 50 years was considered the best-run company in America with the big three auto companies close behind. While I can’t speak to the auto companies, I can about AT&T.

It amazed me when AT&T was a monopoly and people “automatically” paid a bill sent to them each month. So what was it that made their managers so special. I mean no matter what you did as a manager the customer had nowhere else to go, so I guess that equals a winning record and successful leadership. I think we can say the same thing about the big three from the 1940s – 1970s. Not much competition if any at all.

So Mr. Immelt is right, the United States must be able to compete in global competition, I know GE does because it employs over 20,000 employees in India and is rapidly moving their appliance industry to Mexico and soon if not already in China (does anybody worry about the Chinese Government some day just taking over these companies on their soil once they learn all there is to know about the product).

qg is excited about all this talk, after all is it not the “finance” savvy MBAs (finance manager who has been taught to manage by the able to be seen numbers only will define profit as the difference between revenues and expenses). from the last 25 years that have led many of the American companies. You see, Dr. Deming said the worst thing America can do is send our American Management Style oversees. Maybe it will be the best thing for global competition. The workers may be Chinese, Mexicans or Indians, but the boys running the show are Americans.

So the American worker continues paying for the blunders of management. Last week it was reported the average CEO makes $12 million dollars a year and a worker $27,000.

Here is a thought University of Michigan MBA Program – how about bringing in a group of first line supervisors and non-management workers who interface with customers on a daily basis ($27,000). I’m not saying don’t bring in the Harvard bred leaders like Mr. Immelt ($ Millions), just let the future leaders get some reality from the front-line before so they can challenge their “experts” in class for the next 2-4 years. Naw that would not make "cents."