Closing the achievement gap

Utah State Board of Education Member Dave Thomas blogs for UtahPublicEducation.org "Closing the Achievement Gap"

What is the achievement gap? Seems a simple enough question, but the answer might surprise you. The achievement gap comes in a variety of shapes and sizes. It also matters how that achievement gap is being measured and by what testing methodology. Hence, when someone talks about the achievement gap without providing more details, they are not really saying anything useful. . . . → Read More

Here we go again!

Utah State Board of Education Member Dave Thomas blogs for UtahPublicEducation.org "Closing the Achievement Gap"

Yet another report is taking a shot at Utah public education. In the latest by CNBC, Utah comes in 46th in education based upon four factors: test scores, per-pupil funding, class size and concentration of institutions of higher education. Last year, the Utah Foundation did a similar report comparing Utah to seven states with similar demographics, declaring our public education system wanting. As you have heard me say before, college and career readiness is the only true test of the success or failure of an education system. . . . → Read More

What is the best form of governance for public education? Part 3: Diffusion of power is the cornerstone of our Republic

Utah State Board of Education Member Dave Thomas blogs for UtahPublicEducation.org "Closing the Achievement Gap"

Some have argued that eliminating the elected and constitutionally empowered Utah State Board of Education in favor of a system under the centralized authority of the Governor is a good thing for two reasons: First, increased efficiencies and, second, the Governor is the chief executive for the state and therefore, should oversee public education. So what’s so wrong with that? . . . → Read More

Why the “Nation’s Report Card” assessment, NAEP, is unreliable

Utah State Board of Education Member Dave Thomas blogs for UtahPublicEducation.org "Closing the Achievement Gap"

“Many of my colleagues have asked me why I am so opposed to the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) and their fifty state rankings that appear on a bi-annual basis. Or why I cringe when someone calls NAEP the ‘gold standard?’” Read the latest blog post from Utah State Board of Education Member Dave Thomas (District 4). . . . → Read More