Wednesday, September 29, 2010

San Francisco school choice goes in-house

This from the Market Design blog:
Those of you who have been following school choice developments here know that, for the past year, Atila Abdulkadiroglu, Clayton Featherstone, Muriel Niederle, Parag Pathak and I have been helping the San Francisco Unified School District design a new school choice system, which was adopted by the SF School Board last March.

The original plan was that we would continue to offer our services free of charge to implement the software, and then help monitor the effects of the new choice system.

Last week we heard from SFUSD staff that, because of concerns about sharing confidential data for monitoring the effects of the new system, they have decided to do further development in-house, and so will develop software to implement the new design on their own.

The SFUSD staff have been left with a sufficiently detailed description of the "assignment with transfers" design the Board approved to move ahead with it if they wish. But it will take a good deal of care in implementing the new algorithm in software if its desirable properties--strategic simplicity and non wastefulness--are to be realized. (Both of these features were lacking in the old SFUSD assignment system, the one to be replaced.)

Below are links to some of the key developments before last week.

Here is a post with a link to the video of Muriel Niederle presenting the new design that the Board ultimately voted to adopt: SF School Board Meeting, Feb 17: new choice system.
And here is a link to the slides she presented, giving a description (with examples) of the new choice algorithm: Assignment in the SFUSD, and discussions of the features that make it strategically simple, non wasteful, and flexible.

In March 2010 the San Francisco Board of Education unanimously approved the new system. In their March 2010 press release, the SFUSD reported (emphasis added):

"The choice algorithm was designed with the help of a volunteer team of market design experts who have previously been involved in designing choice algorithms for school choice in Boston and New York City. Volunteers from four prominent universities contributed to the effort, including Clayton Featherstone and Muriel Niederle of Stanford University, Atila Abdulkadiroglu of Duke University, Parag Pathak of MIT, and Alvin Roth of Harvard.
“We are pleased that the district has decided to adopt a choice architecture that makes it safe for parents to concentrate their effort on determining which schools they prefer, with confidence that they won’t hurt their chances by listing their preferences truthfully,” said Niederle and Featherstone, the Stanford research team."


Read the full post

62 comments:

  1. It is laughable that SF Kfiles posts two separate articles this morning, one from the Chron that promotes the idea that the new SAS is moving towards more a neighborhood based policy and the other, "SF School Choice goes in-house", that promotes the improvements it is making on school choice. Maybe Jill Tucker of the Chronicle can have coffee with the people at Market Design and come up with a marketing strategy for the new SAS.

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  2. "But it will take a good deal of care in implementing the new algorithm in software if its desirable properties--strategic simplicity and non wastefulness--are to be realized. (Both of these features were lacking in the old SFUSD assignment system, the one to be replaced.)"

    I am very concerned that the SFUSD lacks the technical expertise to design and implement the new choice system in the way it is supposed to work. Why would the SFUSD decline free help from experts? Also, I believe they are experts in making sure the system actually achieves what it is supposed to achieve - transparency, non-wastefulness, etc.

    If the issue is confidentiality, why can't the SFUSD draft a confidentiality agreement that these folks could sign. Seem like there are easy ways to handle to confidentiality issue. If other school districts can get around this issue, why can't the SFUSD? What this amounts to is a lack of oversight of the choice system by an independent third party who (unlike the SFUSD) are experts in this arena and who also help other school districts implement and monitor similar systems. Someone who distrusts the SFUSD might easily conclude that this allows them to manipulate the choice system in ways that are not transparent to parents. Wow – just another terrible decision by the SFUSD.

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  3. BAD IDEA - I'd bet my bottom dollar it'll be broken software that's rushed to completion by the lottery deadline. They need to go outside or it'll never work as promised.

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  4. 11:21 - I agree!

    Geez, how many of us sign confidentiality agreements - the tech industry and government are full of them.

    SFUSD is full of IT!

    And Don is correct - why would anyone believe SFUSD has the technical expertise in house to manage this project, already rife with DIStrust from families that DO NOT trust the district? (Lest we forget, when SFUSD in-house implemented the then-new 'diversity index' algorhythm they 'forgot' to program in sibling priority. That was the year we started kindergarten and fully 20-25% of all kindergarteners that year were not in their older siblings school and there was a scramble all summer to wedge those kids in - by adding classes, over assigning, etc. (without the input of the school sites, of course.)

    This is crazy talk. Bring back REAL expertise to the process if SFUSD wants parents to trust again - ESPECIALLY for a new process that is all new.

    (Hmm - doesn't say much when parents trust an outside organization over SFUSD, does it?)

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  5. Don, I think what they mean is not 'school choice' but the algorhythm/system they chose will be implemented in house. It IS confusing though.

    They need a confidentiality agreement to be signed and take it OUT of house. Heck, save the salaries they pay to pay for it - in the long run it'll save $ through fewer screwups.

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  6. Thank you, Abdulkadiroglu, Featherstone, Niederle, Pathak, and Roth for the invaluable help you have given San Francisco.

    How can we show our appreciation? How about we give you naming rights to the new student assignment system? "CTIP" could be rebranded to whatever you choose.

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  7. Can you please clarify what was the intent in giving a priority for citywide and immersion programs to students from the most "desirable" overflow neighborhoods? Doesn't this change the whole system from neighborhood schools to one where the west side of the city now gets the best schools anywhere in the city? And in CTIP-2 neighborhoods with a poorly performing school, you are "locked in" to poorly performing schools anywhere in the city? I'm just curious why this was implemented.

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  8. 1:00, the answer is pressure from west side parents.

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  9. Can you please clarify what was the intent in giving a priority for citywide and immersion programs to students from overflow neighborhoods? Doesn't this change the whole system from neighborhood schools to one where the west side of the city now is guaranteed the best schools anywhere in the city? And if you live in a CTIP-2 neighborhood with a poorly performing school, you are "locked in" to poorly performing schools anywhere in the city and excluded from city-wide schools and immersion programs. I'm just curious why this was implemented.

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  10. sorry for double posting - didn't think the verification worked

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  11. This is an amazingly bad decision. We've been offered free help from highly educated, experienced experts at the. But, ya know? We can do better! BS. Remember when someone from PPS had to do a code review with some one to find out about the ordered preference tiebreaker!

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  12. God, SFUSD can't even get the waitpool lists up on time. We're supposed to trust them to design an algorhythm for the new system? That's pathetic.

    "....giving a priority for citywide and immersion programs to students from the most "desirable" overflow neighborhoods?" Can someone explain? What the hell constitutes a "desirable" neighborhood, and what algorhythm solves for that?

    And "pressure from west-side parents?" Really? Please explain who, how, when, and where.

    I have a better idea. You move into SF, you are assigned to a caste based on your address (an outside firm designs the names). Your caste position determines the quality of your education K-12, unless you qualify for Lowell.

    Oh, wait. That would be neighborhood schools.

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  13. "I have a better idea. You move into SF, you are assigned to a caste based on your address (an outside firm designs the names). Your caste position determines the quality of your education K-12, unless you qualify for Lowell."

    Yeah. You nailed it 4:15. That's the current system.

    Except that you have left out the part about the caste system also applying to other aspect of city life, such as the level of access to street cleaning, sidewalk repair, road repair and undergrounding of overhead wiring.

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  14. I'm sorry. Maybe I'm not up to speed but when did the district decide to give a priority for immersion and citywide schools to overflow from desirable neighborhoods? Is this the new policy or is this some fantasy? Where is that written?

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  15. And "pressure from west-side parents?" Really? Please explain who, how, when, and where.

    I'm not blaming anyone, but it's true. The parent input meetings preceding the design release, and comment at many other BoE meetings over the years, over-represented parents from the west side, from higher income groups than the mix as a whole, and white and Asian compared to the whole. The voices that were loudest and most constant were dissatisfied parents who hated the diversity index lottery for its uncertainty and for giving most people an equal shot at "their" neighborhood school.

    I wouldn't at all say these are bad points, but they left out the perspective of parents who were very happy to have a possibility of getting out of a bad neighborhood school assignment, or to seek programs not available to them at their neighborhood school.

    Why were these voices under-represented? Lots of reasons, but, you know, language, poverty, not online and plugged in, etc etc.

    Anyway, when the neighborhood ideas were floated along with citywide schools, west side parents were vocal in saying they wanted immersion to be citywide schools, even though most are on the east side and even though crowding is a real problem on the east side whereas there is excess capacity on the west side. They also shouted that they wanted some real remedy for the possibility of being crowded out by diversity/ctip applicants.

    Hence, citywide, including immersion, schools are open to all. As well, crowded-out families get a higher dibs on any school they want than non-crowded-out families. This has the impact of screwing over those families who 1) live in a lower-performing school neighborhood; 2) but are in CTIP2; and 3) are unlikely to be crowded out, because their school is unpopular. So they will get last pick AND may not find their school acceptable. Whereas there aren't too many lower-performing schools over there on the west side, so neighborhood school is not a bad default.

    NO blame. And I'm not an affected family, as we are already in SFUSD. Just saying, the louder voices prevailed on some of this stuff. The devil is in the details.

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  16. Why get reputable services from highly acclaimed experts for free when Carlos Garcia can pay good money to his friends and associates at taxpayer and student expense?

    More computer experts,more placement center staff, more executive directors for assistance superintendents, more staff for F.Sanchez, more professional development and less teachers and counselors for students. That's the ticket. Ain't big government grand?

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  17. It's even more unfair than that. The letter of the new law says you just have to be from an overcrowded neighborhood to get the preference for citywide schools and immersion programs. You don't actually have to get bumped.

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  18. Find it ironic to read posts on Prop B re: our hard working city employees and then read the posts on this thread. We're taliking about some of the same city employees right ? lol.

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  19. I can guess why the monitoring data is confidential - segregation is going to increase, but that is inconsistent with the progressive agenda, so it must be denied.

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  20. will any of the parent programers or designers on this project who were excluded by the action of the school district contact me off list? I wish to follow up on the issue.

    thanks,
    stan
    svg @ comcast.net

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  21. "We're taliking about some of the same city employees right ? lol."

    No. The district is separate from the city. I know of many competent departments and workers in the city (public health, libraries to name two). SFUSD has its own insular culture. I say that much as I love my kids' schools, teachers, principals, and fellow parents, i.e., *that* SFUSD that is us....not so much love for 555 Franklin. Re: Prop B, please know what you are voting for...it's real people's lives, not some kind of political statement.

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  22. Wait, now I'm really confused. Are you saying Prop B will not directly affect SFUSD employees ? Are the arguments invoking teachers benefits based in reality ?

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  23. "The letter of the new law says you just have to be from an overcrowded neighborhood to get the preference for citywide schools and immersion programs. You don't actually have to get bumped."

    That's disgusting. Just disgusting. I'm completely at a loss for words. I began reading this blog thinking publics were a viable option in SF. I visited schools last year and thought the same. But with a Board like that, blown so easily by the hot air of the rich and entitled, public schools are *not* a viable option. I'm praying for private. I'll continue to support our local public as long as I know the money goes directly to them and not SFUSD, but my confidence in the Board is nil. Sad, huh?

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  24. "The letter of the new law says you just have to be from an overcrowded neighborhood to get the preference for citywide schools and immersion programs. You don't actually have to get bumped."

    Where exactly in the Board's policy does it say this?

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  25. 1. If the outside help is not paid, they are not bound by any contractual agreements. For a contract to be valid, both sides must give something and get something. Free help is free - meaning they are not getting anything, thus there is no contract.

    2. It is not that difficult to implement the software according to the published guidelines. The real issue is the cases which are not covered by guidelines, and programmers often make up their own rules (in-house or outside help). The issue with outside help is that the source code or algrithm could get leaked, and then some people with access could have an unfair advantage.

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  26. @ Anon 8:11 - Actually, just because it's free doesn't mean that they are not bound by contract. For a contract to be valid, you just need to have each side receiving something of value to them. In this case, that might be the favorable publicity of doing something helpful for free, or the opportunity to test one's academic work in a real-world scenario, or something else. Point being, "unpaid" /= "not bound by contract".

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  27. I, too, would like to know where you are getting this info about 'bumped' students getting priority at city-wide schools. I thought they said these bumped students would be placed at the neighborhood school nearest to their residence that has space (and if it's on their list of choices, even better).

    Show some proof, please. If it's true, it really is unfair and should be amended, like the '2nd language preference' loophole was amended in the previous lottery once it was pointed out.

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  28. " "The letter of the new law says you just have to be from an overcrowded neighborhood to get the preference for citywide schools and immersion programs. You don't actually have to get bumped."

    Where exactly in the Board's policy does it say this? "

    I want to know too.

    Someone on this blog (and I think it's just one person) keeps posting this as fact, but never explains where in the new SFUSD assignment policy s/he found this information.

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  29. I have not seen a SFUSD policy published wherein bumped students get immersion or citywide preference. I am not saying that is untrue. But it does not jibe with the published plan as modified on Tuesday and if it IS untrue whoever is making that statement should be more careful. Please show me where it says that.

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  30. This in formation comes from an SF K Files post on August 20, at 11:04AM. It's the 4th response under this topic:

    http://thesfkfiles.blogspot.com/2010/08/summary-of-new-system.html

    [According to the Board policy passed last March, these are the lottery preferences. Note they include a preference for those crowded out of a neighborhood assignment.

    * For attendance area elementary schools, the student assignment process will give preference to
    applicants in transitional years (i.e., students entering kindergarten) in the following order:
    1. younger siblings of students who are enrolled in and will be attending the school during the
    year for which the younger sibling requests attendance;
    2. students who live in the attendance area of the school and are enrolled in an SFUSD PreK
    program in the same attendance area;
    3. students who reside in CTIP1 census tracts;
    4. students who live in the attendance area of the school;
    5. students who live in attendance areas that do not have sufficient capacity to accommodate all
    the students;
    6. all other students.


    * For city-wide schools, the choice process will give preference to applicants in
    transitional years (i.e., students entering kindergarten, or transitioning from fifth to sixth grade, or
    transitioning from eight to ninth grade) in the following order:
    (1) younger siblings of students who are enrolled in and will be attending the school during the
    year for which the younger sibling requests attendance;
    (2) students enrolled in an SFUSD PreK program at the city-wide school;
    (3) students who reside in CTIP1 census tracts;
    (4) students who reside in attendance areas that do not have sufficient capacity to accommodate
    all the students;
    (5) all other students.

    So yes, there is a preference given for crowded-out students for both other attendance area and citywide choices.]

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  31. As I read it, Prop B does not affect SFUSD employees at all. It relates to City workers. If anyone has contrary information, please post.

    http://ballotpedia.org/wiki/index.php/San_Francisco_Pension_Reform,_Proposition_B_(November_2010)

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  32. I'm not so concerned that the Stanford folks write the software, but my concern would be that the previous system had features in the code (like using order of preference as a tie-breaker) which went against what the SFUSD believed was the case.

    The Stanford folks have lots of experience with design of market/choice systems and I'd be afraid that the SFUSD contractors would deviate from the stated algorithm and add uncessary bells and whistles and tiebreakers that would fuck up the careful design the Stanford folks have done.

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  33. "Someone on this blog (and I think it's just one person) keeps posting this as fact, but never explains where in the new SFUSD assignment policy s/he found this information."

    Well, it's PPSSF's understanding of the policy as well. I'd trust Vicki and Carol to know their stuff.

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  34. @11:36 a.m. that's really interesting considering many
    of the no on B arguments cite SFUSD teachers and employees being affected negatively should B pass. Sounds like both sides are padding their positions on this one.
    Time for some indepth due diligence voters.

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  35. "2. It is not that difficult to implement the software according to the published guidelines. The real issue is the cases which are not covered by guidelines, and programmers often make up their own rules (in-house or outside help). The issue with outside help is that the source code or algrithm could get leaked, and then some people with access could have an unfair advantage."

    WHAT?

    The source code should not be "leaked", it should be published on EPC's web site. There should be no corner cases with made up solutions, just explicit rules. If they have to publish the source code, it's much more likely to work as directed - if not before they publish it then after it has been subjected to some public scrutiny.

    Nothing should be secret and there should be nothing that anyone can do, outside of lying, to gain an "unfair advantage".

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  36. 11:33,

    You are misreading the assignment policy #4 for citywide and immersion. This preference is NOT for anyone who gets bumped from their local school for lack of space after preferences are taken into account. This is for densely populated areas,the SE really, where there is not infrastructure in place to accommodate all local children at local schools.

    This is from the District website FAQ:

    Students will be assigned to city-wide schools using the following order of preferences:

    1. Siblings - younger siblings of students who are enrolled in and will be attending the school during
    the year for which the younger sibling requests attendance.

    2. SFUSD PreK - students who attend an SFUSD PreK program at the school.

    3. CTIP1 - students who reside in CTIP1 census tracts.

    4. Densely populated attendance areas - students who live in attendance areas that do not have
    sufficient capacity to accommodate all the students living in the attendance area.

    5. All other students.

    I'm not surprised that PPS got it wrong.

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  37. 11:33, thanks for your post. I truly does not seem fair to give kids who were shut out of their neighborhood school preference in the city-wide assignment process. It's absurd. I already have a kid in K, so I do not have a horse in the game, but still, it's not right to set it up this way!! I think the thinking behind it was that this setu up would at least put these 'shut out' kids ahead of the kids who did get into their neighborhood school but are trying for a city-wide school at the same time.

    It's all very confusing. I feel your pain. Can someone bring this up with Rachel Norton, at least? Citywide schools should be fair game for everyone.

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  38. Don, we posted simultaneously, but mine showed up right after yours. Thanks for the clarification. It still seems unfair to give someone preference in an immersion program just because they couldn't get into their neighborhood school. Neighborhood and city-wide schools should be two different categories, unrelated to one another. Kids who are in an over-subbed assignment area should be given an assignment to the next closest school. That would be more in line with a true neighborhood model. They should have equal chance to get into an immersion school as everyone else (behind preferences 1-3, of course.)

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  39. "4. Densely populated attendance areas - students who live in attendance areas that do not have
    sufficient capacity to accommodate all the students living in the attendance area."

    Why would they draw attendance areas that did not have enough capacity for the families residing in those attendance areas?

    Someone please enlighten me...

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  40. 1:37, they can guess at capacity based on historical data, but they can't know for sure how many kindergartners will register from a given attendance area in a given year. Variables include how many 5-year-old kids (or 4- or 6-year-olds) there are who are eligible to attend; how many red-shirt; and how many choose private or parochial. They don't really know the impact of the new system on who will choose to apply. Or the impact of the recession. And so on.

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  41. 1:37,

    This is a long standing issue. There are parts of the city where due to school closures and population changes there simply are not enough spaces for students who live in the vicinity. Part of this is due to the policies of moving children out to better schools and to diversification or desegregation, in the common way the word is used nowadays. This left too much space and cost inefficiencies for abandoned schools to remain open.

    Redrawing boundaries to compensate for this is impossible in the strict sense because the boundaries would have to be so large as to be impracticable. SFUSD became one big community with no school assignment boundaries in effect. Now that we are going back to boundaries, the capacity/infrastructure issues are becoming a glaring sore point. For example, how can you have neighborhood schools if there aren't enough slots for neighborhood children?

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  42. If there are 100 neighborhood kids going after the 50 slots left after the sibling, preschool, and CTIP preferences, then 50 neighborhood kids will have been bumped from their neighborhood school. There is no preference that deals with these bumped kids at any of the lotteries being run by other schools, if the densly populated attendance area preference means only those school areas where the district wished it had more supply to meet the demand.

    So if I get bumped out of Alamo, I will not get a preference to the nearest school. The district will let the lotteries play out and see which school has space. The district will accomodate me to that school which has space, which hopefully is not too far away. That is the way it has always been for the 0/7. This is my understanding of how bumped neighborhood kids will be treated in the new SAS.

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  43. 11:33,

    "You are misreading the assignment policy #4 for citywide and immersion."

    Just to clarify, I didn't misread anything...I just posted a response I found in another topic on this blog, as referenced above the bracketed section.

    There were many posters above mine who wanted to know where someone might have gotten the idea that:

    "...you just have to be from an overcrowded neighborhood to get the preference for citywide schools and immersion programs. You don't actually have to get bumped."
    (from Anonymous @ September 29, 2010 4:36 PM in this thread)

    I personally don't know for sure how EPC is going to deal with this particular issue, as it doesn't seem very clear to me.

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  44. Well then read it for yourself instead of just believing whatever some anonymous person posts.

    http://sfusd.ggnet.net/files/FAQ-placement-policy.pdf

    Dense-Population Tie-Breaker
    How will the tie-breaker for dense-population areas
    work?

    If the number of students who submit applications and
    live in a particular school’s attendance area is greater
    than the number of seats available in that attendance
    area, then all students who live in that attendance area
    will get the dense-population tie-breaker.

    Do I have to list my attendance area school for the
    dense-population tie-breaker to apply?

    No, you will not have to list your attendance area
    school as a choice for the dense-population tiebreaker
    to apply. We do not want to create any rules
    that would require families to list a school on their
    application form that they do not otherwise want to list.
    We want a simple system that allows families to list
    their true preferences when they submit their
    application form.

    Which attendance areas have more applicants than
    seats available?

    This is not something that can be known before all
    applications are submitted; it depends on the number
    of students who submit applications and the number of
    seats available in attendance area schools. We will
    know and share this information as we generate
    assignment offers, and over a period of years we will
    be able to assess the impact of this tie-breaker.

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  45. "Well then read it for yourself instead of just believing whatever some anonymous person posts."

    Dude, chill out. I didn't believe it, as I clearly wrote in my last post. I was simply posting information (found on this blog), explaining why other SF K readers might believe it.

    And I thank you for your most recent information - I gotta tell you, finding any sort of useful documentation on the SFUSD website is a maddening endeavor. I consider myself a good puzzle solver, but SFUSD hides things very well.

    But those Dense-Population Tie-Breaker rules only serve to prove what has a few posters here up in arms. It doesn't distinguish a 'dense-population' school in the east side of town from one in the west.

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  46. And by the way, the information that I C&P in no way contradicts the information that you posted. Your post is simply more detailed about the tie breaking process.

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  47. Some people are reading the 4th preference for citywide and immersion to mean that anyone who got bumped gets a preference. It only applies to those areas that are densely populated. Sorry for jumping down your throat.

    You know what is soooo ridiculous about the middle school postponement?

    Check this out. The BOE had three main objectives in designing a new assignment system:

    • Reverse the trend of racial isolation and the concentration of underserved students in the same school;
    • Provide equitable access to the range of opportunities offered to students; and
    • Provide transparency at every stage of the assignment process

    It seems that at least two of these goals are already lost causes before it even got started. In the case of the second objective - the assignment system was delayed BECAUSE of a lack of equitable access to opportunity.

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  48. I don't get it, Don. That they postponed is in keeping with the objective.

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  49. I smell an idiot hereabouts

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  50. My point being that if equitable access was the objective in the first place how could SFUSD have proposed and why did the Board pass a plan that was so far off that mark that it warranted postponing almost immediately? I will add and I've said it before, it will not be easy for SFUSD to bring up all the programmatic offerings within a year. It is more likely to be solved via preferences given that is the way SFUSD prefers to operate anyway.

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  51. I came across this article on yahoo this evening:

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/csm/20100929/cm_csm/328802

    The article suggests that three things could stand to make education better:

    1) a growing understanding of what works,
    2) increasing public pressure, and 3), the necessity for making hard choices in the face of fiscal crisis.

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  52. In defense of the new SAS:

    1. CTIP addresses the racial isolation issue.

    2. Equitable access does not mean equal access. Equitable just means that the system is fair. A neighborhood school system can be equitable, can be fair, without giving everyone equal access to every school in the district.

    3. Transparency. The incomprehensible diversity index has been replaced with an uncomplicated strategy for parents to list all the schools that they like in the order that they like. The preferences are listed. (The dense area preference is unclear, as evidenced by the discussion in this blog.)

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  53. 10:05 PM

    There is no "transparency" with the preschool application process. "Free Lunch" and "english language learning" have been replace with "earns less than 10,000."

    Transparency my ass.

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  54. I'm not happy with the preK feeding into K, either, since we might barely be able to handle address verification.

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  55. It is clearly the least justifiable rule. It is there to appease the west-side parents who are worried about getting squeezed out of there neighborhood school. I would be OK with the rule, but would require at a minimum that in order to get the preference you should have to select your neighborhood school as your first choice.

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  56. Sorry, as I read my post I realized I left out context. Here's what I mean.

    As has been pointed out here and on other posts, the "dense population" tie breaker applies to BOTH neighborhood schools and to city-wide programs. Dense population is determined by how many people in a neighborhood submit an application on time, NOT by the actual number of K eligible kids that live there. Since it is well-established that whites and Asians actually submit applications on time, while AA and Latinos do not, this basically means that neighborhoods with a lot of whites and Asians will in all likelihood get this tie-breaker. So if I live in the Alamo school district, I have an advantage over someone living in the Muir schools district (who is in CTIP 2) even for a City-wide program or school!

    To make matters worse – the Alamo parent doesn’t even have to list Alamo as a choice! They get the preference regardless of whether they actually select their neighborhood school. That is what is meant when someone says you don’t even have to get bumped from your neighborhood school in order to get the dense population preference.

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  57. what's not fair about the preK preference?! Anyone enrolled in a public preK (CDC) is probably low-income/disadvantaged. Weren't posters just complaining that they wanted the new system to be fair?

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  58. We shied away from income verification for CTIP because we acknowledged that we cannot do a good job over income fraud.

    If there is minimal income fraud taking place for admission into preK, then the preK preference is workable. Similarly, if there is minimal address fraud for the CTIP or the local school preference, then those preferences will be workable. Rules that are not going to be enforced are not fair to those who do follow the rules. The rules over income, we acknowledged, were rules we are not good at enforcing.

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  59. One thing I'm curious about is the per-census-area breakdown of choice-satisfaction rates. The overall effect of the forced-neighborhood system is the same or fewer people getting their top choices, but per-neighborhood, I suspect that the satisfaction rate just shifted to the Western neighborhoods. Certainly my neighborhood just went into the 0% bracket, since the local school gets almost no choices.

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  60. KWillits,

    What? No idea what your trying to say.

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  61. The original study for this system had a comparison of rates at which people get their first or second choices under each system (using last year's application data), but they didn't break it down by neighborhood. Since the assignment system is now per-neighborhood, I'm asking for the rate at which people will get their first or second choices, for each school attendance area.

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