This PLE is designed to develop participants understanding of how to look critically at student and school level data from an equity framework. It is also designed to explore measures of central tendency and the limitations of demographic variables such as race, gender, and poverty level. Students will learn to:
How do we examine existing data for insights into the experiences and achievements of multiple racial, ethnic, and language groups?
Activity: Understanding a data set
|For this activity, we have provided you with a data set of student level data. This data set is to be used to explore a series of equity questions and to prepare you for using data from your own setting.|
Often educators look at a data set and aren’t sure what they are seeing. One of the first steps in using data is to become familiar with what variables are included in the data set, how they are described, how they are numerically represented, and who is included in the data set. This is a scan and description activity to become familiar with the data available.
Break into small groups and examine the data set. Assume that the data included here are representative of the entire school. After examining the data set, respond to the following questions.
For additional discussion: What variable do we use to indicate poverty status? Is this a good measure? Why or why not?
How do we gather information about student race? What are the possible definitional issues?
Activity: Describing the group
Looking at achievement, discipline and attendance data for the entire grade, answer these questions.
Activity: Identifying groups for equity disaggregation
Looking again at the data, answer these questions:
Activity: Identifying proportional representation
Looking again at the data, compare the proportionality of students receiving special education services by each of the following: race, ethnicity, gender, poverty proxy status. Compare proportion of students in each group who receive special education services. What do you see?
Now disaggregate even further and compare by at least two variables. For instance, what is the proportion of black females who receive special education services v. black males, white females, white males, Asian females, Asian males, Latino students and Latina students? What do you see?