Beating the Odds: Studies in Federal Education Research

Date: May 30, 2017
Location: College Park, MD

Former staffer, now associate professor, Mark A. Partridge, Ph.D. provided Optimal staffers an overview of the findings of the Beating the Odds (BTO) study in Federal Education Research. This study is an analysis of student performance in reading and mathematics on state assessments in big city schools. Dr. Partridge’s presentation focused on the BTO findings from South Carolina charter schools.
The BTO study analyzes student testing performance levels against their predicted level of performance. The predicted level of performance is determined by school demographics using a hierarchical linear model approach. Researchers found that 26%–42% of South Carolina charter schools were performing statistically and significantly better on student achievement outcomes than the predicted performance level.
Dr. Partridge is an assistant professor of Economics at Georgia Gwinnett College and has 10 years of experience in federal education policy research. Dr. Partridge has served as a project director and project manager on projects funded by the Institute of Education Sciences and the National Center for Education Statistics, including the Education Statistics Support Institute Network, Task 15-Assessment Division Support, and the National Center on Service Obligations. He assisted in establishing the National Center on Service Obligations. He devised the data collection procedures, database, website, and verification procedure for program obliges. He also served as a data collection specialist on the Evaluation of Charter School Impacts under a subcontract with Mathematica Policy Research.
Dr. Partridge ended his presentation with a preview of his Economics 101: Principles of Macroeconomics lecture that he will be giving to his class at George Gwinnett College next week.
To learn more about the BTO studies please visit
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