The Dim-Post

September 22, 2012

Chart of the day, almost as if there’s some sort of relationship edition

Filed under: education — danylmc @ 9:14 am

(Quick and shoddy because it’s a Saturday morning) I took the Dom-Post’s National Standards data, calculated the average above standards for each school across the three categories, and then compared this to the decile information for each school. Here’s how it looks in a scatter plot:

Some pretty awesome teachers in those decile ten schools – they could teach a lot to those lazy bums ‘teaching’ the poorest kids in the country. And don’t even get me started on teachers in the ‘special schools’.

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28 Comments »

  1. Well which school would you send your child to, if you had a choice

    Comment by Raymond Francis — September 22, 2012 @ 9:41 am

  2. No, you’ve got it exactly backwards, Raymond. The graph shows the combined result of the choices of decile 10 parents.

    Comment by Ben McNicoll (@funksterism) — September 22, 2012 @ 9:52 am

  3. The one with the best teachers. And having taught at some decile 10 schools, they are NOT necessarily the ones with the best teachers.

    Comment by Stephen Doyle — September 22, 2012 @ 10:11 am

  4. Well which school would you send your child to, if you had a choice

    According to this graph, a more relevant question would be “Well, which decile would you belong to, if you had a choice?”

    Comment by Psycho Milt — September 22, 2012 @ 10:26 am

  5. I can’t get over this countrys obsession with having children, why do people want them? they cost shit loads to have, are noisy smelly snot gogglers that get in you way and stop you having fun.

    Comment by frank_db — September 22, 2012 @ 10:42 am

  6. and there we have it in a nutshell. Good work, Allan.

    Comment by Dianne — September 22, 2012 @ 11:37 am

  7. yeah! we found another, much more time consuming and expensive way to measure deciles! well done hekia, tolley and key!

    Comment by lucyjh — September 22, 2012 @ 12:20 pm

  8. It looks like there might be a hint of a cubic relationship there, which if true, would indicate even worse results for the lowest deciles and better results for the highest.

    Comment by Shane Field — September 22, 2012 @ 12:32 pm

  9. You might be right about a link between decile/socioeconomic factors and teacher quality, Danyl. But I think we need to convene a working group of ACT boardmembers to more fully investigate it and propose solutions.
    /sarc

    http://manoferrors.wordpress.com/2012/09/22/obligatory-post-about-national-standards/
    and thanks for the link to this blog which Iam now subscribed to

    Comment by nommopilot — September 22, 2012 @ 12:45 pm

  10. What really got me was the front page Herald story about underachievement in writing. According to an “expert” they interviewed (the head of a writing college) it is caused by text language and slang. OMG, that is sooooo not right.

    Comment by Maureen — September 22, 2012 @ 1:47 pm

  11. Frank

    I think it has something to do with a sense of national pride and wanting to diminish the other races that are coming here and secretly plotting to overthrow our government and taking over our fair land

    Comment by Dan — September 22, 2012 @ 4:14 pm

  12. Does your scatter gram suggest that teachers have little or no impact on educational results which are, in the aggregate, determined by pupil background?

    Comment by Roger — September 22, 2012 @ 4:56 pm

  13. Why is this National Standards thing so bad?

    Comment by Tim — September 22, 2012 @ 5:05 pm

  14. “Does your scatter gram suggest that teachers have little or no impact on educational results which are, in the aggregate, determined by pupil background?”

    I suspect the answer is in the aggregate: all schools have good and bad teachers so they tend to balance out within schools. by the time the statistics are aggregated by school, teacher effects are lost…

    hey, waitaminnit, wasn’t this National standards thing going to tell us which teachers are the “bad teachers”TM?

    Comment by nommopilot — September 22, 2012 @ 5:28 pm

  15. @#13 “Why is this National Standards thing so bad?”

    Mainly because it was conceived by a bunch of ideologues with no real imagination and not a lot of understanding of education.

    Comment by nommopilot — September 22, 2012 @ 5:29 pm

  16. The scatter gram might also suggest that there are no good and bad schools, just schools whose results are largely determined by parent income

    Comment by Roger — September 22, 2012 @ 5:40 pm

  17. @ 12: Some of it maybe determined by pupil background; however, there is also the pupil’s willingness to learn, which is outside of their background and attributed to their personality and ability to understand and retain information

    Comment by Dan — September 22, 2012 @ 6:01 pm

  18. @12
    It just tells us that student “performance” under National Standards appears strongly correlated with decile ranking.

    This could mean that high decile schools have better teachers. Or it could mean that high decile schools have better students. Or it could mean that high decile schools are better at manipulating their National Standards data. Or it could mean that the factors that make a school high decile (better parents education, better parents’ income, better student nutrition, better access to educational resources at home, etc) might have a big impact on student performance.

    Unfortunately, National Standards are not really designed to help answer such questions…

    Comment by RJL — September 22, 2012 @ 7:39 pm

  19. #10: Paul @ Fundy Post has a good fisking of the so-called expert’s background.

    #18: High decile schools don’t have to deal with the “dregs of humanity” and special needs students, because they’re blocked out or priced out in the first place. There was a momentary furore a few months back over higher-decile schools supposedly gerrymandering their zones to keep out lower-decile students.

    From my own decile-10 private school experiences, the teachers were just fine, it was the students that were the problem. To be charitable, basically a bunch of wannabe Mark Hotchins, Louis Crimps and Owen McShanes.

    Comment by deepred — September 22, 2012 @ 9:11 pm

  20. Thanks Danyl – this is extremely revealing!

    Comment by jps — September 22, 2012 @ 9:21 pm

  21. And how many low-decile kids happen to have both parents at work?

    Comment by deepred — September 22, 2012 @ 9:22 pm

  22. High-decile schools do have the tendency to manipulate their data. I went to one high decile school and two average schools and the manipulating of data at the high decile school seemed to be prolific, while it didn’t seem to enter into the reality of the staff at the other two schools.

    Comment by Dan — September 22, 2012 @ 9:53 pm

  23. I went to a mid-decile school, and our teachers were always telling us about how the single-sex schools up the road manipulated their exam results, but that our school was honest.

    Comment by kahikatea — September 22, 2012 @ 10:43 pm

  24. I didn’t think it was meant to be a surprise to see a relationship between ratings and deciles, but I thought if this data would show anything, it might be to compare schools within decile groups. Has anyone made any efforts to do this so far?

    Comment by izogi — September 23, 2012 @ 8:59 am

  25. Cultural capital: Expect a student brought up with a television as prime companion to have a brief attention span that corresponds to programme segments. Accordingly, teachers are trained to deliver lessons as “activities” in short bursts. Ditto gaming – we are now seeing the results of a generation raised on fight, kill, speed and win games that happen in the abstract. No care, no responsibility, no reality. Add in txt & social media – voila! They’re living in a parallel world. Students whose “real life” is pretty tough are most likely to be spending maximum time in their other world. Commonplace for students to resist acquiring knowledge, thinking and process skills because “we can just ask the internet”.

    Compare the student raised in a home where literacy levels are high, reading and meaningful conversation is encouraged, regular holidays happen in a variety of fresh and interesting locations, where the wider family welcomes and mentors younger members and gives them a sense of belonging and identity. Where participation in sports, clubs, arts etc is financed & enabled by families having discretionary income, transport options and the requisite available time. This student has a massive range of inputs, variety, security, a sense of identity and worth, that not only gives them a teflon coating, it means they can navigate their worlds with much greater skill and balance, they have a much stronger base to work from.

    Comment by Scintilla — September 24, 2012 @ 11:27 am

  26. I didn’t think it was meant to be a surprise to see a relationship between ratings and deciles, but I thought if this data would show anything, it might be to compare schools within decile groups. Has anyone made any efforts to do this so far?

    I have! The chart is here:

    http://dimpost.wordpress.com/?attachment_id=13680

    I haven’t decided whether I should release the decile weighted league table. But I can tell you that the ‘best’ school in the country is a decile 2 school in Invercargill,

    Comment by danylmc — September 24, 2012 @ 12:38 pm

  27. Eugh… could you do us all a favour and box-n-whisker that sucker?

    Comment by Phil — September 24, 2012 @ 2:06 pm

  28. Where do you get the data set with the school’s deciles included? On the Stuff website I have found an Excel spreadsheet that doesn’t include them.

    Comment by Shane Field — September 24, 2012 @ 10:22 pm


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