Among the issues most commonly discussed are individuality, the rights of the individual, the limits of legitimate government, morality, history, economics, government policy, science, business, education, health care, energy, and man-made global warming evaluations. My posts are aimed at intelligent and rational individuals, whose comments are very welcome.

"No matter how vast your knowledge or how modest, it is your own mind that has to acquire it." Ayn Rand

"Observe that the 'haves' are those who have freedom, and that it is freedom that the 'have-nots' have not." Ayn Rand

"The virtue involved in helping those one loves is not 'selflessness' or 'sacrifice', but integrity." Ayn Rand

02 November 2009

A National Assessment of Educational Progress Study

The U.S. Department of Education has released a study of the fourth and eighth grade reading and math testing performed in 2007 compared to that of 2005.  They found that 15 states lowered standards in one or more of the tests, while 8 states raised their standard on one or more test.  Using the standards of 2007, 17 states required proficiency in fourth grade reading at a Basic Level, while 31 set their standards below the Basic Level.  The standardization of the requirements was performed according to the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP).  State testing is required by the No Child Left Behind Act.  By law, all students are required to be proficient in reading and math by 2014.

However, the states do the testing.  It is clear that in their desire to achieve the results required, the government-run schools are lowering the standard requirement, rather than requiring the students to hurdle the bar.  The NAEP standard in Tennessee is 198, while it is 254 in Massachusetts.  Maine, Oklahoma, and Wyoming lowered their proficiency standard in both math and reading in both the fourth and eighth grades.  Maine at least maintained a standard at the Basic Level, but Oklahoma and Wyoming did not.

My state of Maryland is one of the majority of states with standards below the Basic Level.  Virginia, Ohio and the entire eastern Midwest, North Carolina, Georgia, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and all of the western states, except a few on the Mississippi River and New Mexico, Nevada, and California are states with Below Basic standards.  Pennsylvania, New York, and all of New England are at the Basic Level.  So are South Carolina, Florida, and Hawaii.  The Mississippi bordering states with the Basic Level standards are Minnesota, Missouri, and Arkansas.

If you have a government monopoly advantage on any service, whether postal, education, transportation, garbage collection, health care, etc., the standards of service drop.

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