Gates and higher ed
Accessed from WhiteBoard Advisors

 

Not content with circumventing the stakeholder groups of parents, taxpayers and state legislators, Bill Gates announced his plans to remake higher education.  It’s a natural transition from K-12 to higher ed for implementation of *his* reforms for American education.  When you are the unelected superintendent for American education, it makes perfect sense.

This announcement from WhiteBoard Advisors explains what the new national data framework entails for the citizens who ultimately will end up paying for it:

 

The metrics published today often only include “traditional” students and ignore the new normal in higher education: “post-traditional” students attending college—or colleges—in new ways en route to their credentials. Colleges and universities, and the data systems that support them, must adjust to and reflect the experiences and outcomes of all students, not just the outdated “traditional” student profile.  It’s time for a system reboot. And we need only look to leading institutions and states for the operating manual.

 

Over the past decade, thousands of colleges serving tens of millions of students in all 50 states have participated in data-driven reform initiatives—from Achieving the Dream (ATD) to Completion by Design (CBD) to Complete College America (CCA).2 In response to the information that campus and system leaders need to support improvement in their communities not being readily or publicly available in existing data sets, these initiatives created and collected new and more robust measures of student access, progress, and outcomes.

 

In this paper, we share what the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has learned from vanguard institutions and states about how to improve and use postsecondary data to increase student outcomes. Our aim is twofold. First, the field has demonstrated the validity and value of these metrics over time and we intend to use them to evaluate the impact of the foundation’s own investments toward increasing the attainment of career-relevant credentials and closing attainment gaps.

 

Second, informed by evidence demonstrating the significant progress that select institutions and states have made through the use of improved data, the foundation will work with partners and policymakers to support the widespread adoption and use of these metrics. Improving the quality and relevance of postsecondary data across the field can better inform higher education practice and policy decisions that, in turn, can boost college access and success across the country . Institutions and states that are already taking advantage of the potential of better data not only show us that doing so is possible, but that it is essential.

 

The foundation has partnered with the Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) to develop a metrics framework that represents how leading institutions and states are measuring their performance. The framework is the product of an extensive landscape and literature review, as well as consultation with a diverse array of experts in the field. The framework offers a set of metrics that are currently in use by major initiatives to measure institutional performance related to student access, progression, completion, cost, and post-college outcomes. The framework also highlights metrics in use that examine institutional performance in relation to resources (efficiency) and with respect to diverse populations (equity). These metrics are certainly not the only data that should be collected or used to inform decision-making in higher education but do represent a baseline that has garnered consensus across institutions, organizations, and states.

 

Dissecting those statements highlighted in red, it’s the same blueprint on how the CCSSI was adopted without taxpayer/legislative input or vote.

  • Colleges and universities, and the data systems that support them, must adjust to and reflect the experiences and outcomes of all students, not just the outdated “traditional” student profile:  Once the Longitudinal Data Systems were adopted by all 50 states so that the Federal funding stream would continue, the states opened themselves up to the whims of ‘philanthropists’, aided and abetted by the politicians enabling this crony capitalism, who are now determining the content and purpose of the data.  Equal opportunity may exist but if the student doesn’t reach a predetermined outcome, the data will inform colleges why this occurred so The Federal Government can determine what new programs must be instituted to reach the end of the rainbow.
  • And we need only look to leading institutions and states for the operating manual:  Doublespeak PR nonsense and half truths, similar to the CCSS language of the standards being ‘state led’.  The operating manual will have to look the same in all the states for those *common* data sets.  The *institutions* which are being look(ed) to are those supported by The Gates Foundation.
  • In response to the information that campus and system leaders need to support improvement in their communities not being readily or publicly available in existing data sets, these initiatives created and collected new and more robust measures of student access, progress, and outcomes:  Just because the initiatives are new and more robust measures does not necessarily mean they are necessary or useful.  Data mining employs researchers who then to defend why they must gather more data on students to justify their projects.
  • In this paper, we share what the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has learned from vanguard institutions and states about how to improve and use postsecondary data to increase student outcomes: Definition of vanguard: the leaders of any intellectual or political movement. Look at the list of the vanguard institutions referenced in the report.  They are the same institutions who are advocating for centralized education, tracking of human capital cradle to grave to determine whether the human capital is a good ROI. 
  • First, the field has demonstrated the validity and value of these metrics over time and we intend to use them to evaluate the impact of the foundation’s own investments toward increasing the attainment of career-relevant credentials and closing attainment gaps: Translation: if Gates isn’t gaining the market share for the products needed for this reform, it will not be a good investment and his reforms for public education may look quite different in the future.
  • Second, informed by evidence demonstrating the significant progress that select institutions and states have made through the use of improved data, the foundation will work with partners and policymakers to support the widespread adoption and use of these metrics: Will Gates use the same informed by evidence argument for this expanded higher ed data that he made for the adoption of CCSS?  We are still waiting for those international benchmarks and best practices evidence presented as talking points by CCSSO/NGO in the CCSS issue.  The same CCSS blueprint is evident in this Higher Ed PR talking points in working with partners and policymakers to support the widespread adoption and use of these metrics.  Gates will just fund the NGOs who lobby those policymakers to ensure Gates’ plan is adopted via mandates or ESSA or Federal grant money.
  • The foundation has partnered with the Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) to develop a metrics framework that represents how leading institutions and states are measuring their performance:  What does ‘partnered’ mean?  IHEP is a funded initiative by The Gates Foundation:  Through the PostsecData Collaborative, IHEP is leading advocacy and research efforts to improve postsecondary education data quality and use. Through the Collaborative, IHEP facilitates critical conversations, builds coalitions, and generates research and resources.  Is IHEP one of the partners to determine the first concern of Gates, that of determining if The Foundation’s investments are creating the outcomes The Foundation desires?  Is Gates really concerned about higher ed students or his own ROI?
  • The framework also highlights metrics in use that examine institutional performance in relation to resources (efficiency) and with respect to diverse populations (equity). These metrics are certainly not the only data that should be collected or used to inform decision-making in higher education but do represent a baseline that has garnered consensus across institutions, organizations, and states: It’s not about academic excellence.  It’s efficiency, ROI and diversity.  And that baseline that has garnered consensus?  It’s more like coercion and the threat of lawsuits and withdrawing Federal funding for data that doesn’t match what the government has decreed is necessary.

 

The report allows a glimpse into the continuing power grab by The Gates Foundation via its partners, networks, coalitions and governmental agencies.  Until it implodes on itself because of economic downturn or the unlikely event elected politicians grow a spine and refuse the Federal carrots, this is probably educational reality.   Here’s the goal of Gates.  Again, no mention of academic excellence.   All hail the nation’s workforce needs. From pg 13/31:

 

main questions Gates

 

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