Get flash to fully experience Pearltrees
The following blog post was written by Eye On Education's Senior Editor, Lauren Davis. To read more newsworthy blog posts from Eye On Education, subscribe to our Insights eNewsletters . At the NCTE convention in November, everyone was buzzing about the Common Core State Standards . Teachers wanted to know how the new standards will alter what they teach and how they teach it.
This post originally appeared on the blog of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute. According to Tom Loveless of the Brookings Institute, “The Common Core will have little to no effect on student achievement.” To prove this, he draws on research from 2009 conducted by his colleague, Russ Whitehurst. Essentially, Whitehurst found that the quality of state standards (as judged by our own Fordham analyses as well as analyses conducted by the AFT) did not correlate with state NAEP scores. More specifically, he found that “states with weak content standards score about the same on NAEP as those with strong standards.”
Jay Mathews is the Washington Post senior journalist on education. He writes frequently about school reforms. This article appeared February 23, 2012; Chester Finn writes often for Education Gadfly . He wrote about Common Core on March 1, 2012. Jay Mathews: Virginia, take a bow.
Steve Davis just finished his ninth year teaching English to high school sophomores and seniors in a large northern California urban school district. This is Part 1 of a two-part post. The end of the year is always bittersweet for me.
By The horse race of international rankings in education is based on misconceptions that can lead countries such as the United States to consider sweeping reforms that probably won’t improve academic achievement, according to a new report. The 2012 Brown Center Report on American Education released yesterday by the Brookings Institution makes a case against Common Core standards – arguing that California’s current standards are superior – and cautions against placing too much weight on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) and international comparisons. “We have to be careful when looking at test score data; i t’s not the same thing as how many points did the New York Giants score versus the New England Patriots in th e Super Bowl. These tests have to be interpreted very carefully,” said author Tom Loveless in a video accompanying the study.
Dina Strasser When ASCD asked me to write about the National Governors Association and Council of Chief State School Officers' (CCSSO) draft English/Language Arts core standards , I agreed with delight—but also with a less pleasant sense of duty. I imagine very few people enjoy perusing pregovernmental documents, after all. However, I felt that as a language arts teacher at the gateway of American secondary education, I had better bite the bullet and read the document. I was not prepared to find a text that would make me nod, laugh, frown, think, and—literally—weep. Perhaps these varied responses are the best reflection of my primary concern about the standards: the massive unevenness of the document itself.
David Cohen just wrote a great piece about a session he was in yesterday at the ASCD conference here in San Francisco. He writes about his fears that the new Common Core standards will be left a reeking hulk after the textbook companies politicians and consultants are through with them. While I am not as leery as he is, I have to agree that he is exactly right that the devil is in the details and poor implementation of these new standards can be a disaster!
The Finnish National Board of Education (FNBE) is the national agency subordinate to the Ministry of Education and Culture. The FNBE has a wide range of tasks related to the development of education all through pre-primary and basic education, general and vocational upper secondary education and training, adult education and basic education in the arts. FNBE is responsible for drawing up the national core curricula for pre-primary and basic education and general upper secondary education and the national qualification requirements for vocational education and training and competence-based qualifications.
Tom Hoffman sent me a link to the Finn’s national standards for education in response to a post I put up recently about searching for higher purpose in English. I didn’t even get to the Finn language arts standards. I arrested on five pages describing “cross-curricular themes” that apply across all disciplines in Finland. These themes are clarified, in the most firm language, before anything at all related to specific curriculum is addressed. I’ll just quote some of them here.
Calls for shared curriculum for the common standards have triggered renewed debates about who decides what students learn, and even about varied meanings of the word “curriculum,” adding layers of complexity to the job of translating the broad learning goals into classroom teaching. The most recent calls for common curriculum came from the American Federation of Teachers and the Albert Shanker Institute, a think tank named after the late AFT leader. Many others are working on pieces of that puzzle—an array of instructional resources for states, districts, and teachers. But the calls for “shared” or “common” curricula have sparked particularly heated conversations. Scholars, bloggers, and activists are exchanging fire about whether shared curriculum means lessons dictated from afar.
Dan DiMaggio was blown away the first time he heard his boss say it. Tony Nelson After three years working as a scorer, Dan DiMaggio says he's a skimming machine. "It's ugly," he says. "You just go as fast as possible." Todd Farley worked for 15 years in the testing industry before quitting to write a tell-all book about his former employer's scoring procedures
Today my guest is Todd S. Farley, who worked for years in the standardized testing industry and authored the new book “ Making the Grades: My Misadventures in the Standardized Testing Industry .” I asked him to write about the biggest problems he encountered and here is his account . Here is what he wrote. By Todd S.
Myths About Content and Quality: General Myth: Adopting common standards will bring all states’ standards down to the lowest common denominator, which means states with high standards, such as Massachusetts, will be taking a step backwards if they adopt the Standards . Fact: The Standards are designed to build upon the most advanced current thinking about preparing all students for success in college and their careers. This will result in moving even the best state standards to the next level. In fact, since this work began, there has been an explicit agreement that no state would lower its standards. The Standards were informed by the best in the country, the highest international standards, and evidence and expertise about educational outcomes.
Published Online: January 7, 2010 Published in Print: January 14, 2010, as Debunking the Case for National Standards Commentary By Alfie Kohn I keep thinking it can’t get much worse, and then it does. Throughout the 1990s, one state after another adopted prescriptive education standards enforced by frequent standardized testing, often of the high-stakes variety.
Support for Common Core Standards (CCS), or the idea that all students across the country should be taught the same rigorous material, is growing. 40 states have already adopted the national CCS for math and English, while the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) and business leaders are currently collaborating to extend these standards to all disciplines. For states like California, which already had some of the most rigorous standards in the U.S., adoption of the CCS may actually dumb down many of their courses. Nevertheless, many politicians (and unions) have jumped on board, afraid of looking soft on rigor. The real winners are not the children, but the textbook publishers, who will win billions of dollars in contracts to replace the old books based on the old standards, and the test publishers, who will win contracts to assess students on their mastery of the new standards. Not all are on board with this trend.