Ta-da for TUDA!

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The 2013 Trial Urban District Assessment (TUDA) results were released today. This data provides an in-depth look at student test results on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) for 21 urban districts, allowing their leaders and the public at large to compare performance and gauge trends.

The treasure trove of data provides reasons for several districts to rejoice, especially when compared to the previous time the test was administered in 2011:

  • District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) saw increases in all grade and subject configurations: grades four and eight reading and math. White, Black, and Hispanic students scored higher in 2013 than in 2011 in reading at grade 8.
  • Los Angeles also saw score increases in grade four math as well as reading scores in grades four and eight. White, Black, and Hispanic students in 2013 scored higher than in 2011 in mathematics at grade 4.
  • Among other highlights, Baltimore City saw an increase in scores in fourth grade reading, and Chicago and Atlanta had increases in scores in fourth grade math. Fresno also saw increases in both 8th grade math and reading.

When the NAEP results were released last month, D.C. was lauded for its significant gains but critics were quick to point out that these results could not be used to judge the spate of reforms in teacher quality policy that DCPS has rolled out since 2007, mainly because those results also reflect the performance of D.C.'s large charter school sector. TUDA's exclusive focus on DCPS students debunks that myth. While we certainly can't say that the dramatic changes DCPS made to teacher evaluation and compensation caused the rise in these TUDA scores, it does seems like more than just a coincidence that DCPS continues to see significant gains in student learning since these policies were implemented. 

There's a lot of ways to slice and dice the data available on the website. We can't wait for folks to dig in.