Sunday, May 20, 2018

Full Complaint: New Jersey Law Codifies School Segregation, Lawsuit Says

Proposed Flood Wall Along Observer Highway to Limit Flood Impact (2018)
It appears that the growing concern over institutional and systemic racism in the Hoboken School District may be more substantial than some members of the district would like to admit or confront. Regardless, it is clear that issues of segregation initially heard in Maplewood, echoed in Hoboken are now openly discussed across the State of New Jersey as a recently filed lawsuit makes claim. There appears to be little doubt that Hoboken will play at least some sort of role in the coming litigation. This "little story" that began in Hoboken a few months ago at Board of Education meetings is now becoming state and national news as this story has gotten picked up by major media outlets. -Dr. Petrosino

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — A lawsuit filed by a civil rights coalition claims racial segregation in New Jersey schools persists more than six decades after the Supreme Court ruled the practice unconstitutional. The Latino Action Network, the New Jersey chapter of the NAACP and others unveiled their lawsuit against the state Thursday. It was announced on the 64th anniversary of the Brown v. Board of Education ruling that struck down separate-but-equal schools. The lawsuit cites a UCLA civil rights report and contends New Jersey has one of "the most segregated public school systems in the country." The plaintiffs say about two-thirds of black students attend schools that are 80 percent or more nonwhite. A New Jersey governor spokesman said he can't comment on pending litigation but said "the governor is deeply committed to boosting diversity in our schools."

New Jersey’s schools are among the top six most racially segregated in the country; there is a 17 % higher proficiency rates on state standardized tests among third graders attending a diverse school; there are 270,000 Latino and black students attend public schools that are attended by more than 90 percent children of color and 80 % of black and Latino children attending racially segregated schools in New Jersey come from low-income families.

How is this related to the Hoboken School District: The litigation will likely need to obtain key information from the State of New Jersey Department of Education and various school districts.

Links: Inclusive Schools NJ; Read more about this story in The Wall Street Journal; US News and World Report; The New York Times
More related links: Black Parents Workshop

The Black Parents Workshop, Inc. announced in late April the establishment of a Hudson County Affiliate – the South Hudson (SoHUD) Black Parents Workshop that will focus on school districts in Hoboken, Jersey City and Bayonne, New Jersey.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Invitation to Attend May 17th Press Conference: School Desegregation Lawsuit Moves Forward

There are a number of parents of children of color in the Hoboken Public Schools who have expressed various degrees of frustration, displeasure, and/or outrage concerning claims of institutional and systemic racism in the Hoboken Pubic Schools.

On April 26, 2018 The Black Parents Workshop, Inc. announced the establishment of a Hudson County Affiliate – the South Hudson (SoHUD) Black Parents Workshop that will focus on school districts in Hoboken, Jersey City and Bayonne, New Jersey

On May 17, 2018, the 64th anniversary of the Brown v. The Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas a planned lawsuit will be filed in Trenton, NJ on behalf of the plaintiffs in the planned school desegregation lawsuit.
This issue is gaining increased attention statewide as well as by local media outlets especially after Maplewood/South Orange agreed to a $127 million remediation plan for the segregation occurring in their schools (Full story CLICK HERE). The lawsuit against the district earlier this year, claims a wide range of racial issues in the district, including segregated lower grades and a tracking system in the high school.

A call has gone out to the parents and grandparents of children who are plaintiffs in the upcoming lawsuit. Specific details follow:

To Parents/Grandparents of children who are Plaintiffs in our School Desegregation lawsuit: 

As I believe we have discussed, we are planning to file our lawsuit against the State of New Jersey challenging the constitutionality of school segregation on Thursday, May 17, 2018, the 64th Anniversary of the United States Supreme Court’s decision in Brown v. The Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas. 

On that day we have organized a Press Conference to which representatives of all newspapers, TV stations, blogs and other media will be invited. The Press Conference will be held in the State House in Trenton, beginning at 10:30 AM, in Caucus Room L 103, which is a conference room directly opposite the Senate Chamber. 

All of you are invited to attend, along with your children/grandchildren. If you plan to attend, I would urge that you arrive early to allow time for parking behind the State House and finding Caucus Room L 103, which is on the first floor of the State House. 

If you attend without your child/grandchildren, you may wish to bring along a picture in case members of the press ask about photographs. Please send me an email before May 17 and let me know if you plan to attend. 

All good wishes. gary stein 


Saturday, May 12, 2018

Petrosino et al. (2018) Using Collaborative Agent-Based Computer Modeling to Explore Tri-Trophic Cascades with Elementary School Science Students

This paper investigates an in-service teacher and her student’s abilities to utilize, implement, and enact a participatory agent-based modeling program, developed as part of the group-based cloud computing (GbCC) for STEM Education Project funded by the National Science Foundation. In this first cycle of design-based implementation research with an in-service teacher and her 300 students, we examine student participatory learning and teacher experience. By implementing models with teachers, we intend to 1) improve iteratively the GbCC learning technologies and 2) develop more informed and aligned pedagogies for teaching in socially mediated and generative learning environments.

Petrosino, A. J., Sherard, M. K., Harron, J. R., & Stroup, W. M. (2018). Using collaborative agent-based computer modeling to explore tri-trophic cascades with elementary school science students. Creative Education, 9(4), 615-624. doi:10.4236/ce.2018.94043

Sunday, May 6, 2018

The Black Parents Workshop Network Expands into Bayonne, Hoboken, and Jersey City- April 26, 2018 Press Release

The Black Parents Workshop is a group of parents and community organizers whose primary purpose is to advance educational equity in public schools. They work to represent the voices of Black parents and to hold educators and administrators accountable for serving Black children. They
work to ensure that Black children have access to the tools necessary to advance their educational or career interests. You can read more about the organization by clicking HERE.

On April 26, 2018 the Black Parents Workshop published the following press release that should be of interest to parents and community members of southern Hudson County, New Jersey:

April 26, 2018  

Black Parents Workshop Network Expands into Hudson County

South Hudson (SoHUD) Black Parents Workshop Affiliate Announced

(Maplewood, NJ) – The Black Parents Workshop, Inc. has announced the establishment of a Hudson County Affiliate – the South Hudson (SoHUD) Black Parents Workshop that will focus on school districts in Hoboken, Jersey City and Bayonne, New Jersey. SoHUD – Black Parents Workshop will hold a general organizing meeting for parents at 6:30 pm on Thursday May 10, 2018 at the Mary McCleod Bethune Life Center at 140 Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive in Jersey City. The Black Parents Workshop, Inc., (BPW) is a Maplewood based not-for-profit organization, founded in 2014 with the mission of representing Black parents and their children for the purpose of advancing equity in elementary and secondary education. The BPW focuses on racial disparities in student access to courses, student discipline and teaching staff, as well as culturally competent curriculum and the treatment of students with special needs. 
Black Parents Workshop Chairman Walter Fields said, “We are excited and encouraged by the formation of our new Hudson County affiliate. It represents an important development in tackling issues that are the function of structural racism in public education. We believe Black students in Hoboken, Jersey City and Bayonne deserve better than what they are currently receiving in their schools. SoHUD - BPW represents a very important step in giving Black families a voice and a tool by which to advocate on behalf of their children.”
Hoboken parent-advocate Courtney Wicks said, “Between Hoboken, Jersey City, and Bayonne, we all are taking on the same issues but there are definitely nuances with each Board of Education that differs for each city. The experience with the Board of Education has been mixed depending on which South Hudson City.  In Hoboken specifically, the Board of Education is made up of entirely parents who currently benefit or have benefitted from racial tracking and segregation and as a result there has been stages of escalation that started with pacifying these issues, then denying these issues, to outright hostility and the use of various forms of intimidation. Ultimately, we feel the Hudson County Department of Education should be holding all of these districts accountable for their discriminatory practices and lack of a comprehensive plan for realizing true equity and access in each district.”
SoHUD leader Courtney Wicks, a parent with a child in the Hoboken Public School District, will join the Board of Trustees ( of the Black Parents Workshop, Inc. Chairman Fields pointed out the significance of the new Trustee. “For too long, the Black community in New Jersey has allowed the fragmented nature of the state’s hyper-segregated system of public education betray our common interests. We may have over 600 public school districts in our state, but we stand united with one mission – the education of our children. As parents, as taxpayers, we are demanding that Black children throughout our state’s 21 counties receive the quality education prescribed by the New Jersey Constitution and federal statutes.” 
Wicks noted, “Since the Brown vs. Board of Education decision 64 years ago, we still have not truly realized the promise of a quality public school education free of discrimination and it falls   on our shoulders to provide pushback, a counter narrative, and to fight to make the country better for our children.”
In recent weeks, the Black Parents Workshop has filed a federal lawsuit, Black Parents Workshop v. South Orange-Maplewood School District (Case # 2:18-cv-02726) in U.S. District Court in the District of New Jersey and appealed to the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools on behalf of Black students in South Orange and Maplewood, New Jersey. The launch of the South Hudson affiliate is the first of several expansions currently underway in and outside the state of New Jersey.
Jersey City Political Blogger Bruce Alston states, “Ultimately, we feel the Hudson County Department of Education should be holding all of these districts accountable for their discriminatory practices and lack of a comprehensive plan for realizing true equity and access in each district.” He further notes, “There is no way to correct the societal issues plaguing the Black community unless we dismantle all the forms of discrimination and segregation in public education.” Jersey City Parent Advocate, George Fontenette further draws parallels to the climate in the three Hudson County communities represented by the new affiliate of the Black Parents Workshop. “We are seeing that the failure of Black children is not only accepted but baked into the system- Black excellence is the exception instead of the rule where policies such as using discipline, classifications, and homeschooling are used punitively, the use of leveling to racially track Black kids into lower level academic courses, school segregation to separate and then marginalize the emotional, psychological, and academic growth and performance of Black children.” 
Fields added, “Though our work originated in a predominantly White suburban school district, the issues we are confronting are systemic in nature and are not limited by the boundaries of any one community. The challenges in South Orange and Maplewood that Black students endure in their fight for a legally entitled education in a nondiscriminatory environment, is the same for Black students in urban school districts, such as Hoboken, Jersey City and Bayonne. We are building a movement for systemic change in public education. Our intent is to ensure that the legacy of the Brown decision endures in New Jersey and that this generation of Black children are educated in school districts that are integrated throughout school buildings, in classrooms and in a manner that prepares them for productive lives as adults.”

Over the next two months, the Black Parents Workshop Inc., will be working with its South Hudson affiliate to evaluate conditions in the three school districts and make a determination as   
to the appropriate course of action to remedy grievances that currently exist and racial disparities in student achievement. The Black Parents Workshop is weeks away from launching its Union County affiliate and currently in the preliminary stages of working with parents to organize new affiliates in Colorado and North Carolina. 

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Press Release: Hoboken Mayor, District Superintendent Join in Celebrating HoLa Charter School’s Award

Left to Right: Barbara Martinez, HoLa Board President; Julie Blunt, New Jersey Department of Education
Ravi Bhalla, Mayor of Hoboken; Dr. Christine Johnson, Superintendent of Hoboken Schools 
Jennifer Sargent, Executive Director HoLa; Emily Jabbour, Hoboken City Councilwoman
Mike Defusco, Hoboken City Councilman
HOBOKEN, NJ (April 27, 2018)—The Hoboken DualLanguage Charter School celebrated its “model program” award at an assembly this morning that featured speeches by Mayor Ravi Bhalla, city council members as well as the Hoboken District Superintendent, Dr. Christine Johnson.

“We’re here to celebrate what HoLa has accomplished through the years,” said Mayor Ravi Bhalla.”When we look at Hoboken, we always want to be ahead of the curve and be an example, and HoLa is leading the way, the Mayor said. He also made note of the presence of Hoboken Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Christine Johnson.

“I think Dr. Johnson’s presence shows that we as a community have turned the page and we are coming together to work together,” the Mayor said as HoLa parents burst into applause. “There are great things happening in the district schools, great things happening in the charter schools and what really matters is that we start having a conversation and continue that conversation so that we are working together, because at the end of the day we are one community. We can all learn from each other and I’m so proud that Hola in its own distinct way is not only a model for Hoboken but for the entire state of New Jersey.”

Last week the New Jersey Department of Educationnamed HoLa a Dual Language Model Program.  HoLa was one of only 5 schools in the state of New Jersey to receive the designation, and the only charter school in the state. As a Dual Language Model Program, the NJ DOE said that HoLa will serve as a “resource for other districts in the state and enable educators to witness firsthand exemplary practices in dual language instruction and assessment.” The award followed a rigorous application process that included a full-day site visit by DOE officials and interviews with students, parents, teachers and administrators.

At the assembly, Dr. Johnson said “one of the most powerful things we can do as human beings is recognize the strengths and accomplishments in others; I think it’s good for the soul and for community building, and great for education. On this very special day and beyond, I feel great about celebrating your accomplishments and know that I’m personally very proud of the things you’ve accomplished and all the work of Ms. Sargent and her staff.”

Jennifer Sargent
Jennifer Sargent, HoLa’s Executive Director and lead founder of the school said that “it is incredibly meaningful to all of us here at HoLa to have representatives from the state, the county, the city and our local district schools here together in one place to celebrate along with us.  This really is an inspiring glimpse of what public education can look like--coming together in support of all of our students: those here are HoLa, in our neighboring schools throughout Hoboken and across the state.”

She also led all of the students, families and elected officials in a long standing ovation for the teachers of the school, “who are the backbone of the success that HoLa has demonstrated.”

City Councilmembers Mike DeFusco and EmilyJabbour also attended and spoke at the event.

HoLa students at Model Program Ceremony 4/27/18
“What you’re learning is not just a second language,” DeFusco said to the students. “You’re learning about how to be global citizens of this world. And as you look around and see all the disagreements going around, in Hoboken, in this country and this world, it comes from a lack of understanding of one another. When you are learning a second language, you’re learning how to communicate on a global level,” he said.

Councilwoman Jabbour said she was planning a meeting of all school leaders in the city to keep collaborative conversations between schools going—so that schools can learn from each other for the benefit of all of Hoboken’s children.

For Press Click HERE  
Supporting Dual Language Click Here 
Hoboken Board of Education Votes Down HoLa 4-3 (January 2009)
HoLa Rejected (Feb 2009)  
NJDOE Compliance Decision on HoLa Contract (2009) 

Thursday, April 19, 2018

NJ.COM/New Jersey Department of Education Reports on Most Recent SAT Scores of All Public High Schools in Hudson County, NJ-

Hoboken Monday, April 16, 2018 
As reported by, the New Jersey state Department of Education released school by school data on SAT scores in it NJ School Performance Report for the 2016-17 school year. In Hudson County only four schools surpassed the state average for the SATs, the standardized test that is considered one of the key factors in college admission. The state average score for the SAT reading and writing test was 551 and for the math portion it was 552 -- for a 1,103 total. Some 17 public schools in Hudson County didn't reach that total. 
The average Hudson County combined score for the math and the reading/writing was 1,014, with scores ranging from a low of 859 to a high of 1,308. Hudson's average for math was 509 and for reading/writing it was 504. 
1. McNair Academic High School
Location: Jersey City
Reading/writing score: 646
Math score: 662
Total: 1,308

2. High Tech High School
Location: North Bergen
Reading/writing score: 597
Math score: 595
Total: 1,192

3. Infinity High School 
Location: Jersey City
Reading/writing score: 567
Math score: 598
Total: 1,165

4. Secaucus High School
Location: Secaucus
Reading/writing score: 555
Math score: 569
Total: 1,124

5. County Prep High School
Location: Jersey City
Reading/writing score: 542
Math score: 548
Total: 1,090

6. Weehawken High School
Location: Weehawken
Reading/writing score: 542
Math score: 525
Total: 1,067

7. Bayonne High School
Location: Bayonne
Reading/writing score: 526
Math score: 518
Total: 1,044

8. Kearny High School
Location: Kearny
Reading/writing score: 519
Math score: 513
Total: 1,032

9. Harrison High School
Location: Harrison
Reading/writing score: 504
Math score: 502
Total: 1,006

10. Liberty High School
Location: Jersey City
Reading/writing score: 501
Math score: 503
Total: 1,004

11. M.E.T.S. Charter School
Location: Jersey City
Reading/writing score: 487
Math score: 495
Total: 982

12. Memorial High School
Location: West New York
Reading/writing score: 484
Math score: 489
Total: 973

13. North Bergen High School
Location: North Bergen
Reading/writing score: 490
Math score: 481
Total: 971

14. Dickinson High School
Location: Jersey City
Reading/writing score: 473
Math score: 497
Total: 970

15. Union City High School
Location: Union City
Reading/writing score: 475
Math score: 482
Total: 957

16. University Academy Charter School
Location: Jersey City
Reading/writing score: 464
Math score: 476
Total: 940

17. Hoboken High School
Location: Hoboken
Reading/writing score: 470
Math score: 465
Total: 935

18. Hoboken Charter School
Location: Hoboken
Reading/writing score: 448
Math score: 466
Total: 914

19. Ferris High School
Location: Jersey City
Reading/writing score: 435
Math score: 447
Total: 882

20. Snyder High School 
Location: Jersey City
Reading/writing score: 438
Math score: 431
Total: 869

21. Lincoln High School 
Location: Jersey City
Reading/writing score: 431
Math score: 428
Total: 859 
Click to Enlarge
How do these Hudson County High Schools compare to other schools in the state of New Jersey? You can point your browser to this link to look up your own Hudson County High School of interest. For regular readers of this blog, the Hoboken High School is ranked 334 out of 387 public high schools in composite SAT scores (Mathematics + Reading).

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

2018 American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting- Petrosino's Presentations

The American Educational Research Association, or AERA, was founded in 1916 as a professional organization representing educational researchers in the United States and around the world. It is headquartered at 1430 K Street in Washington, D.C. As a nonprofit serving the education research field, AERA strives to advance knowledge about education and promote the use of research to improve education and the public good. This year’s annual meeting of over 15,000 members will take place in New York City. Below are the paper and posters that I will be presenting with fellow colleagues and graduate students along with a brief abstract on details of each research project. -Dr. Petrosino

1) Harron, J. R., Petrosino, A. J., & Jenevein, S. (2018, April). Pre-service elementary education teacher perspectives of the use of virtual reality in science teaching. Paper presented at the meeting of the American Educational Research Association, New York, NY.

Place: Monday, 12:25. We are listed first. Millennium Broadway New York Times Square Fourth Floor, Room 4.04-4.05
Abstract: This paper explores the use of pre-service elementary science methods teachers’ perceptions of using virtual reality (VR) in science teaching. Participant engaged in a VR field trip to a natural history museum and visited the location in person. Findings include VR experiences in science could be used to teach about remote locations, places that are too dangerous to visit, to observe events that are usually too small or too large to view with the naked eye, and to experience different time periods. Further findings include participants prefer actual field trips, but view VR as a viable alternative based on access, time, and cost. Finally, research has uncovered possible misconception regarding using VR as an alternative for low income students.

2) Lim, W. S. and Petrosino, A. J. (2018, April). Teacher Sensemaking Orientation as regard to Their Implementation Fidelity. Poster session presented at the 2018 Annual Convention of the American Educational Association Annual Conference, New York, NY.

Place: Monday 8.15am at Hilton midtown

Abstract: Using qualitative case study and numerous data resources (PD’s observation, survey, classroom observation and rating, interview, self-report, and artifacts collection) the research revealed six common perturbations for the occasion of sensemaking of program’s core components that shared by all teacher participants. They are, the value of PD in their classroom, their emotion and feeling regarding the implementation of the core components, the relevance of PD program to students needs, the relevance of PD to State Standard, the implementation network that operate within school, and time constraint. The occasions of sensemaking that arise only on the low fidelity implementers are, abundance of information gained from professional learning experiences, unclear of his roles and responsibilities to implement the core intervention components, unclear of setting and environment during implementation, and success measure of implementation are lacking. In the other hand, sensemaking of the high fidelity implementers is focusing on, availability and accessibility to instructional resources, accessibility of the experts, their current progression towards establishing student-centered classroom, and availability of planning time during the PD. The research also identifies four types of teacher’s implementation orientation as they make sense of the PD program. They are, (i) passive distributive, (ii) critical evaluative, (iii) creative emergent, and (iv) transformative. The research found that teacher sensemaking of PD is interconnected to their implementation. Thus, to study teacher sensemaking is not only to focus on how teachers make sense the PD program, it must also study how they implement it in the classroom.

3) Petrosino, A. J., Park, J., Park, S. (2018, April). Investigating Community of Practice Development During the Professional Development Summit Using Social Network Analysis. A paper presented at the 2018 Annual Convention of the American Educational Research Association Annual Conference, New York, NY.

Place: Monday 2:15 pm. The Parker ,3rd floor, Tansa 2 Room.

Abstract: This study explores the pre-existing and development of a social network during a National Science Foundation (NSF) professional development summit by using social network analysis and statistical analysis. Data originated from 34 participants. We wanted to quantify the level of each attendee’s social network expansion by measuring the levels of relationship with others at the conference through pretest and posttest. This characterizes networked structures in terms of nodes (individual actors) and the ties, edges, or links (relationships or interactions) that connect them. These networks are visualized through sociograms that nodes are represented as points and ties are represented as lines. Results from sociograms visualization demonstrated that most of participants had significant expansion of their social-network through professional development summit. 

Hoboken Board of Education Meeting- April 10, 2018 Full Agenda

Tuesday, April 10, 2018


Monday, April 9, 2018

SITE 2018 Poster- Petrosino et al. (2018)- Using Collaborative Agent-based Modeling to Explore Complex Phenomena in Pre- and In-service Teacher Education

Click to Enlarge 
The following posted was presented at the Annual Meeting of SITE 2018. The title of the poster was Using Collaborative Agent-based Modeling to Explore Complex Phenomena in Pre- and In-service Teacher Education and authors included Max Sherard, Jason Harron, and Mica Kohl. 

SITE, known as the ‘The Friendly Society’, is unique as the only organization which has as its sole focus the integration of instructional technologies into teacher education programs. SITE promotes the development and dissemination of theoretical knowledge, conceptual research, and professional practice knowledge through conferences, books, projects, and the Journal of Technology and Teacher Education (JTATE).

ABSTRACT: Teaching and learning about complex physical and social systems are important for preparing learners for life in the 21st century. However, Grotzer and Tutwiler (2014) explain that reasoning about these systems can be difficult when heuristic driven cognition “can derail an ability to discern and understand these complex causal features” (p. 97). Recent research shows that agent-based computer simulations have been used individually with students to promote learner’s understanding of complex systems (Rates, Mulvey, & Feldon 2016). Despite classrooms being group situated experiences; instruction typically engages only the individual by following the initiation - response - feedback (IRF) sequence (Wells, 1993).

Monday, March 26, 2018

Petrosino et al. (2018): Using Group-based Cloud Computational Models as a Way to Help Students Investigate Complex Yellowstone Trophic Interactions

The following is a poster presentation of research that my colleagues and I have been engaged with for the past few years on agent-based modeling and will be presented at the Southwest Regional 2018 American Society of Engineering Education Conference in April.

Friday, March 16, 2018

Effective School Districts: An Analysis by Researchers at Stanford University Shows Hoboken has the Lowest Growth Rate in Hudson County, and Among the Lowest Growth Rates in the State of New Jersey and the Entire Nation (bottom 13%)

Hudson County Growth Rates (see full data below)
How would you feel is after 5 years of schooling (Grades 3 to 8),  your child advanced the equivalent of 6 years? In Chicago where new data shows this is occurring, parents, teachers, school officials and taxpayers are thrilled. Now, how would you feel if after 5 years of schooling you found out your child advanced only 4.1 years? That is the case of what is occurring in Hoboken, NJ. 
In the 5 years between Grades 3 and Grade 8, students in that district are advancing only 4.1 grade years. The lowest rate in Hudson County, and one of the lowest rates  in the State of New Jersey and in the nation. 
An article in the New York Times by Emily Badger and Kevin Quealy spotlights the work of researchers at Stanford University should be of great interest. The researchers not only used state test scores but a host of other data to present one of the most comprehensive studies yet on student success and effectiveness of school districts in delivering a quality educational experience for children. -Dr. Petrosino 

In some public school systems like the Chicago Public Schools system, enrollment has been declining, the budget is seldom enough, and three in four children come from low-income homes, a profile that would seemingly consign the district to low expectations. In fact, some would characterize the Hoboken Public Schools in this manner (although not accurate). But students in Chicago are learning faster than those in almost every other school system in the country, according to new data from researchers at Stanford University. Not so in Hoboken, a much smaller district, much better funded and far less children from low-income homes. 
In Hoboken, New Jersey after 5 years of instruction from Grade 3 to Grade 8, students advance only 4.1 grade years. This is by far the lowest effective rate of all districts in Hudson County, many of which have much higher percentages of low income students and less well funded schools than Hoboken. Hoboken has one of the highest cost per student allocations in the State of New Jersey and far above any national average. Hoboken also has a declining percentage of students from low income families. 
Data based on some 300 million elementary-school test scores across more than 11,000 school districts, tweaks conventional wisdom in many ways. Some urban and Southern districts are doing better than data typically suggests. Some wealthy ones don’t look that effective. Many poor school systems do.

5 Year Effective Growth Rate- Hoboken (NY Times)
This picture, and both Chicago’s and Hoboken’s place in it, defy how we typically think about wealth and education in America. It’s true that children in prosperous districts tend to test well, while children in poorer districts on average score lower. But in this analysis, which measures how scores grow as student cohorts move through school, the Stanford researcher Sean Reardon argues that it’s possible to separate some of the advantages of socioeconomics from what’s actually happening in schools.

“One question we’ve been asking ourselves is: Do urban public school systems simply reflect the poverty of the kids in the schools, or do they overcome those effects to any degree?” said Michael Casserly, the executive director of the Council of the Great City Schools, which represents large urban districts. This new data shows that student in Chicago overcome them while children in Hoboken, NJ do not. 

Educators have long debated whether it’s better to evaluate students and schools on proficiency levels or growth rates. Mr. Reardon’s data makes possible a national database of both. 

Districts with high growth are scattered across the country, in contrast with sharp geographic divisions on proficiency tests like the NAEP which show Northern schools ahead of those in the Deep South. School systems across Arizona and Tennessee that appear to test well below national averages are in fact over performing in growth. 

District Effectiveness Data (Stanford University/NY Times)
Hudson County, New Jersey (data obtained 2018)

Name of School District Growth Rate After 5 Years (Yrs.)                     National %       
East Newark 5.7 92
Guttenberg 5.6 90
Harrison 5.2 71
Jersey City 5.1 66
North Bergen 5.1 66
Kearny 4.9 58
Secaucus 4.8 48
West New York 4.8 47
Bayonne 4.7 40
Weehawken 4.7 41
Union City 4.6 38
Hoboken 4.1 13

Average Growth Rate: 4.87 yrs
Standard Deviation for Average Growth Rate: 0.38 yrs

  New Jersey 5 Year Efficiency Rating by Anthony Petrosino on Scribd
(note: scroll through all the data for NJ School Districts- Hoboken is on p.11) 
Hoboken ranked 428 out of 442 ranked NJ school districts 

Monday, March 12, 2018

Full Detailed Meeting Agenda: March 13, 2018 Hoboken Board of Education Meeting