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Glitch in Student 'Growth' Scores Causes New York to Redo Principal Evaluations

The New York state department of education will redo a portion of its 2014-15 principal evaluations because of an error in using student growth scores in some of the evaluations, Newsday reported.

The state department of education said that only about one-half of one-percent of the more than 4,000 educators were affected by the error, the paper said, citing a memo from the department.  

But even with the small number of affected educators, the department's admission is likely to add ammunition to those who object to using student test scores in educators' evaluations, including for principals and teachers. Student growth is one of several measures used in principal evaluations in New York.

The paper said that the error affected the scores by no more than one point.

The department said that the Washington-based American Institutes for Research, or AIR, which conducted the statistical analysis, "inadvertently" did not include students' records in calculating the scores for some schools and principals, according to Newsday. The department has asked the company to recalculate the growth scores for all principals in grades 9-12.

Elizabeth Berlin, the department's executive deputy education commissioner, wrote that the agency took immediate action to ensure that no teacher or principal would be negatively affected by the error, the paper said.

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