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Education planners usually use certain indicators to measure and evaluate equity and efficiency in school systems as schools and education systems are striving to achieve higher quality performance (Jacobs, 2010). Such indicators for measuring efficiency in schools include the grade drop out rates, completion/graduation rates, grade wastage rates, grade survival rates, attendance rates, grade repeater rates among many other indicators (Cheng & Wu, 2007).
These indicators are used to evaluate the internal, external, technological and economic efficiencies of the education system and the school system. Education planners use the available statistical data from the education office and schools to calculate and determine the efficiency of the educational system and the school systems.
The grade drop rate is the unaccounted for figure after the number of learners promoted and those repeating have been deducted from the original enrolment as a proportion of the same original enrolment (Cheng & Wu, 2007).
Graduation involves a horizontal movement process by learners where learners graduate in the same year in which they are in their final grade or year. Completion/graduation rate is the total number who graduates in a particular year as a proportion of the total enrolment in the final grade in that particular year (Cheng & Wu, 2007).
Lanier school and Harlandele School are both in Texas though in different districts. Lanier School is in San Antonio ISD district while Harlandale School is in Harlandale ISD district. The available data shows that Harlandale School has been enrolling more students as compared to Lanier school in the subsequent years of 2008 and 2009 with Harlandale having a total number of 1818 while Lanier School has 1365 students.
Harlandale School has also had more matched number of students in both Mathematics and Reading for the subsequent years. Lanier School shows a higher mobility rate than Harlandale School with averages of 27.2% and 20.4% respectively. The data also shows higher average scale score and Kat Average scale score for Harlandale School than Lanier school in the two subjects presented for the two subsequent years.
However, Harlandale School has had a higher average failer average TGI than Lanier school in the two subjects for the subsequent years. Lanier school has been in the 3rd and 4th quartile in Reading and Mathematics respectively for the subsequent years while Harlandale School has been in the 4th and 2nd quartile in Reading and Mathematics respectively for the subsequent years.
Generally, Harlandale School has had high attendance rates in the two years between 2006 and 2008. The average attendance rate has been over 90% for all the groups measured. The average attendance rate for the two years was about 93% which is a good indication of the students’ general commitment to school and learning. The school has also achieved a remarkable improvement in attendance rates for almost all the indicators measured.
There has been an attendance improvement for the African-Americans, the Native Americans, the females and the males, special education and the economically disadvantaged with a slight drop among the Limited English Proficient students. This shows that the school is achieving internal efficiency by putting in place measures which enhance high attendance levels among the students.
Lanier School has also had high attendance rates although not as high as Harlandale School. It has also had an attendance rate of above 90%, however, it has had a mixture of results in the indicators measured with very slight improvements and decreases or even none improvements at all in the attendance rates.
The data presented shows that there were no attendance recorded for Native Americans and the Asian-Americans in 2006-2007 period. However, the slight improvements in attendance in 2007-2008 period of less than five students was a clear indication of the schools improvements in achieving efficiency.
The attendance rate for the White Americans has also seriously reduced to below five students in the 2007-2008 period. This situation contrasts the situation in Harlandale School which had a high attendance rate in the same period with about 93.9%. The attendance rate for the Limited English Proficient students in Lanier School also shows a slight decline of about 0.3% just like Harlandale School which also experienced a slight decline of about 0.4% in the 2007-2008 period.
There are also slight decreases in the attendance levels in Campus Group in both Lanier School and Harlandale School with a margin of 0.1% and 0.2% respectively. Generally, the high attendance rates among the students in the two schools show an achievement of high internal efficiency levels.
Drop out Rates
Generally, the data presented shows low drop out rates of slightly above 3% in Harlandale School for grades 9 up to 12 for the two years between 2006 and 2008. An analysis of the drop out rates in Harlandale School for the two years shows an overall decrease in the drop out rates for the two years in all the groups measured.
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The school did not experience any drop out for the two years in the African American students and also had a significant decrease from 6% in 2006-2007 period to 0.0% among the White Americans in the 2007-2008 period. This is an indication of the school’s internal efficiency.
On the other hand, Lanier School has had a slightly higher drop rates as compared to the Harlandale School. As compared to the Harlandale School, Lanier School had more significant improvements in the 2007-2008 period from the high drop out rates in 2006-2007 period although it has maintained a 100% survival rates among the White American students in the school.
Lanier School had significant decreases in drop out rates among the Limited English Proficient group, students who acquire special education and the African-American students with margins of 7.2%, 3.9% and 4.2% respectively.
However, both schools did not have any representation from the Native Americans in the 2006-2007 season. Harlandale School had less than five students in the 2006-2007 period from the Asian-American community while Lanier School had none for the same group in the same period. In the 2007-2008 period, Lanier had slight improvements in both the Native American students and the Asian-American students enrolment although with less than five students.
Thus an analysis of the two schools shows that the two schools are achieving high survival rates and low drop out rates, however Lanier school is achieving higher improvements in its internal efficiency as compared Harlandale School due to higher rates of decrease in the drop out levels and increase in enrolments for the Native American students and Asian American students.
Completion/ student Status Rate
All the groups measured to determine the internal efficiency of Harlandale School show high completion rates of over 75% for the classes which graduated in 2007 and 2008 except for the Limited English Proficient group which had 58.8% and 72.4% in 2007 and 2008 respectively.
In Harlandale School the highest group of students who received GED was less than 1.5% and less than 2% in 2008 and 2007 respectively. On the other hand, the completion rates among the indicators measured in Lanier School showed far much lower completion rates in almost all the groups with the Special Education students and the Limited English Proficient students achieving as low as 49.2% and 45.5% respectively.
Students who received GED in Lanier School were also more than those who received GED in Harlandale School with Lanier School as high as high as 2.5% in 2008 and 3.4% in 2008. Lanier School also showed higher drop out rates as compared to Halandale School, however, both schools show a serious drop in the number of White American Students with Harlandlae having less than five students in the category and none for the Lanier School.
Completion rates I and II shows significant improvements in Lanier School and Harlandale School which is an indication of improvements in their internal efficiency. However, the overall analysis shows that Lanier school is achieving lower completion rates and even below average completion rates in particular groups of students.
Careful analysis of all the groups of students measured showed that although Harlandale has many students in grade 9 to grade 12 as compared to Lanier school, Harlandale School has greater internal efficiency than Lanier School. This might have been attributed by the lower number of young teachers in Lanier School as compared to Harlandale School. The more experienced teachers may not be in a position to better understand the needs of the students.
Cheng, G & Wu, K. (2007). The internal efficiency in higher education: An analysis based on economies of scope, 3(1). New York: Springer Publishers.
Jacobs, H. H. (2010). Curriculum 21: Essential education for a changing world. Oklahoma City: Association for Supervision & Curriculum Development.