Iowahawk takes a brief departure from what he calls his “normal folderol” to respond to Paul Krugman’s column on public school education in Texas. Iowahawk calls Krugman’s column “a nugget of stupidity so egregious that no amount of mockery will suffice. Particularly when the issuer of said stupidity holds a Nobel Prize.” Iowahawk’s interesting response is “Longhorns 17, Badgers 1.”
Iowahawk looks at test results posted on the NAEP Web site, broken down by grade, state, subject and ethnicity. “So how does brokeass, dumbass, redneck Texas stack up against progressive unionized Wisconsin?” Iowahawk looks at the data and then sums up:
To recap: white students in Texas perform better than white students in Wisconsin, black students in Texas perform better than black students in Wisconsin, Hispanic students in Texas perform better than Hispanic students in Wisconsin. In 18 separate ethnicity-controlled comparisons, the only one where Wisconsin students performed better than their peers in Texas was 4th grade science for Hispanic students (statistically insignificant), and this was reversed by 8th grade. Further, Texas students exceeded the national average for their ethnic cohort in all 18 comparisons; Wisconsinites were below the national average in 8, above average in 8.
Perhaps the most striking thing in these numbers is the within-state gap between white and minority students. Not only did white Texas students outperform white Wisconsin students, the gap between white students and minority students in Texas was much less than the gap between white and minority students in Wisconsin. In other words, students are better off in Texas schools than in Wisconsin schools – especially minority students.
Iowahawk concludes: “instead of chanting slogans in Madison, maybe it’s time for Wisconsin teachers to take refresher lessons from their non-union counterparts in the Lone Star State.”