If you visit your school’s SchoolBook page today, you might notice something different.
SchoolBook has updated its schools data, and the pages for all public schools (that includes charters) now have the latest available information. That includes:
- Grades 3-8 English language arts and math scores for 2012
- Parent survey results
- 2011 Regents exam results
- 2011 graduation rates
- 2011 SAT scores
- 2011-12 official public school enrollment, broken down by race.
Because these numbers changed, so did the SchoolBook indexes, which rate schools on a 1-9 scale for performance, satisfaction and diversity. You can find out how the indexes are derived in our “Behind the Numbers” post and in our Frequently Asked Questions section.
The state test scores were released last month, and over all, New York City students showed modest gains in both English language arts and math, but still lagged behind students statewide. As SchoolBook reported:
The scores posted by about 440,000 students in third through eighth grade, who took the tests in April, showed that 60 percent passed the statewide math tests, compared with 57 percent last year.
But fewer students showed proficiency on the English exams, though the results improved from last year: 47 percent of students achieved proficiency compared with 44 percent last year, according to the state Education Department.
The state released school-by-school results at the same time, but they were listed in a way that made them difficult to search. SchoolBook extracted them, and the SchoolBook pages for public elementary and middle schools now reflect those scores.
You can find your school’s scores by typing in the school’s name in the yellow “Find + Compare Schools” box on the right side of each page.
When you click through from the search results page to your school’s page, you will see a box along the right side with the indexes for performance, satisfaction and diversity, and a sampling of available public data.
Click on “View All Data” to go even deeper into the performance and characteristics of your school; you can find an array of numbers related to testing, demographics, staff and other variables, as well as graphical representations of how your school compares to similar schools.
SchoolBook also offers search-and-compare tools, so you can pull up data side by side on individual schools that interest you. You can access the compare tool from the school search page; just check the schools that interest you and hit compare at the top of the page. Data for up to four schools at a time may be displayed.
You can also compare from an individual school’s page by scrolling down the left column and clicking on the yellow “Compare to Other Schools” box.
These tools were developed by The New York Times to help parents navigate the volume of data that is released each year on schools (you will find less information for private and parochial schools, as far fewer numbers are publicly available). They are part of the three pillars of this site, which started at the beginning of the 2011-12 school year with the theme News, Data and Conversation.
As we said then:
Why SchoolBook? Because we were told over and over again, even within our own buildings, that the choices facing New York parents for their children’s education were daunting. Because teachers and principals and policy makers and researchers too rarely interact and share their expertise and perspective. Because we have been sitting on troves of data about schools that draw crowds every time we surface them. And because few articles set off more comments, discussion boards, e-mail threads and playground conversations than those about schools and education.
Plunge into the data. Click deeply. You will see a rich array of data, which we hope will continue to make the search for a school for your child more methodical and less overwhelming.
Follow the news, written and told by reporters for WNYC and The New York Times. And do join the conversation. You will find the quality is high and the responses diverse. Keep them coming.