I never have finished the material under the heading of "Tracking Students," but teachers and parents should also be aware of the efforts going on to track them too!


Go here to see a recent story about this endeavor:


Here's an excerpt from the article:


The Gates Foundation has been funding an organization called the Data Quality Campaign, which operates to pressure states to develop "longitudinal data systems" to track student and teacher test performance in fine detail over time. In much the same way the NCTQ is in the process of rating schools of education across the country, and the Media Bullpen is acting as self-appointed "umpires" to "hold the media accountable," the DQC has developed a system to give "grades" to states for their educational data systems. To get their seal of approval, state data systems must have the following ten features:

  1. A unique statewide student identifier that connects student data across key databases across years.

  2. Information about each student's demographics and participation in programs like Free and Reduced lunch.

  3. The ability to match individual students' test records from year to year to measure academic growth.

  4. Information on untested students and the reasons they were not tested

  5. Statewide Teacher Identifier with a Teacher-Student Match. This enables the use of VAM systems, and also the comparison of teachers from different teacher preparation programs.

  6. Student-level transcript information, including information on courses completed and grades earned.

  7. Student-level college readiness test scores

  8. Student-level graduation and dropout data

  9. The ability to match student records between the P-12 and higher education systems

  10. A state data audit system assessing data quality, validity and reliability

As usual, Arne Duncan's Department of Education is in lockstep with these ideas. They have made the expansion of data systems a central feature of Race to the Top and the NCLB waivers. States are being asked to develop systems very much along the lines laid out by the Data Quality Council, and the DQC's recent summit in Washington featured Arne Duncan and Michelle Rhee - that expert on quality data -- as speakers..


It seems as if we will then have, in effect, a nationwide data system with detailed information about every single person enrolled in a public school.


I don't want that, and I hope you don't either!