"The whole people must take upon themselves the education of the whole people and be willing to bear the expenses of it. There should not be a district of one mile square, without a school in it, not founded by a charitable individual, but maintained at the public expense of the people themselves." -- John Adams

"No money shall be drawn from the treasury, for the benefit of any religious or theological institution." -- Indiana Constitution Article 1, Section 6.

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilisation, it expects what never was and never will be...nor can they be safe with them without information. Where the press is free and every man able to read, all is safe." – Thomas Jefferson

Friday, April 17, 2009

Educationally Barren

Where might you have heard the following?
"Various spokespeople have stated that the tests are 'educationally barren,' that teaching to the tests has 'distorted the whole education process,'"
Sound like part of a rant against NCLB? Actually it's a quote from an article about what's happening in the UK, where teachers and principals (headmasters) are staging a revolution against the very test insanity that we, as a nation, are promoting. It would be nice if we could learn from others' mistakes.

More...
"...there is 'overwhelming evidence showing the Sats damage the education of children...Testing narrows the curriculum and makes learning shallow'"
My favorite...
"...the original purpose of examinations, to assess students’ progress, has become confused with school accountability and the performance management of teachers.”
Just like the "tests" in the US, the UK standardized tests have not improved education.
“In practice these tests have proved to be a nightmarish failure. The Sats have not only led to a marked decline in standards, they have broken children’s zeal for learning. They have alienated pupils, teachers and parents alike without making schools properly accountable….the Sats have made children better at passing abstruse exams but in so doing have bludgeoned out all enthusiasm for learning"
According to the author of the article...
"NCLB was modeled on and grew out of the UK’s Sats exam initiative, a program that preceded it by over a decade. While it’s of course impossible to compare directly the two countries’ educational systems, it is also foolish not to observe and learn from the English experience. After two decades of data-driven, standardized exam-based performance measurement, the pendulum in the UK is clearly swinging back toward local, teacher-based assessments with periodic but less intrusive system-wide assessment."
Read the whole article on the NYC Public School Parents Blog.

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1 comment:

Nick Burbules said...

Thanks for the link to Progressive Blog Digest. I have added you to my blog list as well.

Nick