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'Most Challenging' Charter School Network Outperforms Country, World

'Most Challenging' Charter School Network Outperforms Country, World

Based on newly released tests results from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Test for Schools, six eligible schools from the BASIS school network scored significantly higher than most of the U.S. as well as the highest-ranked school systems in the world.

"Overall, BASIS students outperformed every educational system in the world in reading, mathematics, and science, and had a higher percentage of students scoring in the highest proficiency levels in every subject—higher than Shanghai (the highest-ranked school system in the world) and much higher than the rest of the United States," according to BASIS' press release

This year,several BASIS schools were ranked by the Washington Post as America's 25 Most Challenging High Schools, with BASIS Oro Valley being number one. 

According to one American educator, BASIS schools earn their challenging ranking and top scores through consistent AP testing.

"First, you need to know that BASIS schools require their kids to take AP tests, and most of the high school courses for kids are AP. So it’s clear they are challenging," said educator Mike McClellan for the East Valley Tribune.

As a result, McClellan says that Basis loses a lot of students over the course of time as they go onto pursue less challenging options.

"In 2009, according to the Department of Education, it had 40 freshmen. By the time those kids were seniors, 15 had left, a 37 percent loss of kids. And according to the state report on graduation, none of those kids was economically disadvantaged or limited in any way by language," he said.

McClellan argues not to dismiss the amazing test results that BASIS students achieve, but to keep in mind that BASIS is typically judged on a small, not diverse body of students as compared to the larger and more diverse bodies that make up district schools.

"Let’s celebrate BASIS. But let’s also celebrate the many district schools that succeed with more diverse and challenging student bodies," he said.

Read his full post here and comment below.

Article by Nicole Gorman, Education World Contributor

05/26/2015

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