Issue: 2019 Volume 57

(4) Examining Alignment of Classification Quality to High-Stakes Test Decisions in Florida

Lissette A. Tolentino
Anne Corinne Huggins-Manley
University of Florida

Abstract
High-stakes testing in education often requires the use of cut scores to report achievement. In Florida, cut scores are used to establish different levels of proficiency. Although the Florida Standards Assessments (FSA) reports the accuracy rates for cut scores, it does not report classification consistency, nor does it report information on the alignment between the high-stakes cut scores and variations in classification quality across a range of possible cut scores. Our purpose is to perform a case study evaluating the alignment between marginal classification accuracy and consistency rates across the ability continuum to cut point locations for high-stakes cut scores, and to demonstrate the practical utility of this cut score evaluation method that was proposed by Wyse and Babcock (2016). We achieved this purpose through the use of a large set of simulated test data samples generated from FSA item and person parameter estimates.

Citation
Tolentino, L. A., & Huggins-Manley, A. C. (2019). Examining Alignment of Classification Quality to High-Stakes Test Decisions in Florida. Florida Journal of Educational Research, 57(4), 1-14.

Download: Tolentino574.pdf (9 downloads)

(3) The Effect of a Statewide School Voucher Program on School Enrollment Change Using Difference-in-Differences Methods

Hyun-Ki Shim
Florida State University

Abstract
This study examines the impact of the Florida Opportunity Scholarship Program (OSP), a school-based voucher program, on change in total enrollment and share of disadvantaged students by measuring the effect on timing of treatment: immediate effect, lagged effect, and cumulative effect. By collecting school- and district-level time-varying controls from the Census, Common Core of Data, and Florida Department of Education, this study constructed a panel dataset consisting of 1,945 Florida public elementary schools across 67 districts, spanning 2011 through 2016. In general, this study found a negative impact on total school enrollment change, but positive change on free-reduced lunch (FRL) share in enrollment. The negative effect of OSP was only significant within one more year when additional time indicators were included in the analysis. On the other hand, the FRL share shows no significant change from the immediate and lagged effects. All in all, OSP eligibility has a negative impact on total enrollment change which implies that underperforming schools experienced greater student displacement than other schools.

Citation
Shim, H-K. (2019). The Effect of a Statewide School Voucher Program on School Enrollment Change Using Difference-in-Differences Methods. Florida Journal of Educational Research, 57(3), 1-22.

Download: Shim.573.pdf (18 downloads)

(2) The Effect of Florida School District Classifications on Academic Outcomes: A Multivariate Analysis

Lauren Raubaugh
Ying Xiong
University of Central Florida

Abstract
This study takes a macro-scale look at the state of Florida, utilizing aggregated data from all 67 of its school districts from academic years 2015–2016 and 2016–2017, as a first step to understanding statewide patterns. It details statistical analyses that intend to describe (rather than generalize) trends in student performance on standardized tests by district, testing for an effect of location on performance when accounting for additional student variables. Findings can provide a framework around which to inform policy changes and pedagogical techniques in order to improve the quality of education across the state.

Citation
Raubaugh, L., & Xiong, Y. (2019). The effect of Florida school district classifications on academic outcomes: A multivariate analysis. Florida Journal of Educational Research, 57(2), 158-169.

Download: 17.-Raubaugh.572.pdf (36 downloads)

(2) An Analysis of Geographic Trends in Exceptional Student Education Services

Lodi Rohrer
Alisha Braun
Phyllis Jones
Jennifer R. Wolgemuth
David S. Lamb
Karen Colucci
Vonzell Agosto
Zorka Karanxha
University of South Florida

Abstract
This study examines geographic patterns of inclusive education placements and specialized programs for students with disabilities in a single region of Florida during the 2017–2018 academic year. Publicly available data on exceptional student education services are used to compare three adjacent school districts on enrollment patterns. Thematic mapping of educational placements at the school level is used to illustrate geographic patterns for one of the districts. Overall, results suggest that the majority of students in the region are served for most of the day in general education classrooms. Geographic maps show that schools with specialized programs tend to be clustered in areas with larger populations. These results have important implications for developing transportation routes that can minimize travel times for students with disabilities who attend specialized programs at schools outside of their assigned zone.

Citation
Rohrer, L., Braun, A., Jones, P., Wolgemuth, J.R., Lamb, D.S., Colucci, K., Agosto, V., & Karanxha, Z. (2019). An analysis of geographic trends in exceptional student education services. Florida Journal of Educational Research, 57(2), 150-157.

Download: 16.-Rohrer.572.pdf (52 downloads)