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Kings Collegiate Charter and IS 588: Setting the Record Straight

Since even the New York Times could not figure out how many students vanished from last year’s 6th grade class at Kings Collegiate Charter, let’s set the record straight: the number is 23, and the percent is 30. Thirty percent of the students vanished even as the percent of students deemed proficient rose… hmmm… 38 percentage points!… from one year to the next.

Which is why it would have been nice if after ushering Secretary Duncan in and out the front door of the (freshly painted) charter school, Mr. Klein had taken Duncan around the back where the students from the public school enter every day. These schools are co-located. True, the halls at IS 588 had not been freshly painted for the visit. But halls aside, Mr. Duncan might have seen a perfectly fine — perhaps even a wonderful — public school. Let’s compare.

First, students arrived at IS 588 with greater academic struggles:

Incoming Scores
IS 588 Kings Collegiate
Average student scores upon entering in the 2008-2009 school year (most recent available) 2.86
(average is below proficient)
(average is above proficient)
Citywide percentile ranking based on incoming scores 19th percentile
(and lower incoming scores than half the district schools)
58th percentile
(and highest incoming scores in district)

But, once they arrive, these IS 588 students do not vanish from the cohort:

Student Attrition
IS 588 Kings Collegiate
Percent of students who vanish from the ELA testing cohort between year one and two (2008 and 2009) 6% 30%

Which makes the gains at IS 588 more impressive than those we see at their charter counterpart:

Progress in Math and Reading (Change in Percent Proficient)
IS 588 Kings Collegiate
MATH: increase in % proficient in school’s first cohort
(change from 2008 to 2009)
32 points
(51% to 83%)
9 points
(from 91% to 100%)
ELA: increase in % proficient in school’s first cohort
(change from 2008 to 2009)
41 points
(from 29% to 70%)
38 points
(from 58% to 96%)