Julie Mack: Mackinac Center's school rankings reminder of inequities in education and life | MLive.com
Nonetheless, the Mackinac Center analysis is an important recognition that — contrary to what most people believe — raw tests scores are a terrible way to evaluate educational effectiveness.
That's because scores are dramatically skewed by sociodemographics. Not a little, but a lot. It's like comparing crop yields from the loamy fields of Iowa to the desert sands of Arizona, and chalking up the differences to farming skills.
The fact is, test scores are much more a reflection of students' lives outside of school versus an indicator of whether teachers are working hard or the quality of the curriculum.