Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Complexity Isn't A Bug, It's A Feature

I'm not so cynical as to think that the primary goal of California's new school grading system is to be opaque and incomprehensible, but after seeing this new system it's difficult to come to the conclusion that such goals weren't considered at all:
California’s proposed new evaluation system will use a colors — lots of colors — to evaluate schools by lots of factors, reports the Orange County Register.

The old Academic Performance Index, suspended in March 2015,  generated a single number based on test scores:  800 was the goal. Schools could be compared against schools with similar demographics. Parents could see how a school’s API score changed over time or check performance by subgroups.

The color-coded California Model shows boxes for test scores, attendance, dropout rates, English proficiency, access to advanced classes in high school, parent involvement, suspension rates and more.

The API may have been “simplistic,” the new system is so complicated it’s incomprehensible, editorializes the Los Angeles Times.
See the colors at the top link.


Pseudotsuga said...

*eye roll*
Okay...so now a particular shade of red (for example) is easier to understand than a number?
Well, let's just replace GPA with colors, too!
My GPA is Pantone Red 302...do I get a scholarship?!

Darren said...

If only Blogger had a "like" button....

Ellen K said...

Sounds like someone in the state office hired their unhireable graphic designer son in law to do the work.