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The See-Saw of Education: The Suprising Reasons Why Other Nations Outperform the US

What, you say? Yesterday it was push-pull and today it's see-saw? What will it be tomorrow???Tomorrow? Well, maybe I will use a phrase that Rob Horowitz and I used to bandy about: the churn.I am a big fan of Valerie Strauss's blog in the Washington Post: The Answer Sheet.It doesn't hurt that she has from time-to-time pointed towards Dewey21C, but really, it's because of posts like the one I am going to direct you to, that I really admire her work.She's posted a guest blog by William J. Mathis, Managing Director of The National Education Policy … [Read more...]

Essential Reading for Arts Education–Unintended Consequences: High Stakes Can Result in Low Standards

Okay, fair enough, the article I am strongly recommending is not about arts education, per se. Or is it? Why don't you give a good summer read to Linda Perlstein's piece in the American Educator: Unintended Consequences: High Stakes Can Result in Low Standards.As an added bonus, you get a short piece by noted testing expert Daniel Koretz, whose work recently led to the recalibration of standardized ELA and Math test scores in New York State, which has in turn led to other such potent matters such as the evaporation of claims made by the New … [Read more...]

A Moment of Clarity: Test Scores in New York State Are Recalibrated

Many of you have no doubt heard the great news over the past few years about rising ELA and math test scores in the New York City Public Schools. But wait, there was more: test scores were rising all across the state, no matter what the intervention.The New York State Department of Education has recalibrated the state test scores for ELA and math, and this moment of clarity tells us that "just more than half of city students in the third through eighth grades are proficient in math, not four out of every five, as they were led to believe last … [Read more...]

Through a Prism: The Bending of K-12 Arts and Education

As much as people are disappointed with the way arts education is situated within the USDOE's Blueprint for ESEA reauthorization, most people I know inside and outside the arts are pleased with the proposal to rethink AYP . For those who don't get what I am talking about, click here for a quick and lively catch-up. I was looking at a Wall Street Journal editorial yesterday, about the Administration's new ESEA Blueprint. Now, fair enough, it is WSJ after all, and that editorial board would prefer that all schools were charter schools and that … [Read more...]

Oh! The Tests You’ll Take–What Dr. Seuss Might Have Written Today

Perhaps, had Dr. Seuss been alive today, he might have written the counterpart to Oh! The Places You'll Go and called it: Oh! The Tests You'll Take.One of the things I like to do with this blog is to bring to your attention things you might have missed. Here's one for ya:Tips for the Admissions Test...for Kindergarten is a piece from last week's New York Times that looks at just how out of control the testing craze has become. But wait, there's more, as in more tests a comin'. Here's a little taste of the article:Private schools warn that they … [Read more...]

Insult to Injury: State Reading Tests Can be Passed by Guessing

This little topic is a tough one. Think about it: according to number of different reports, the NY State ELA tests, which drives just so very much of the educational industrial complex, can be passed by guessing. When arts education is being pushed off the table, out of the school day, etc., look to how the curriculum is narrowed due to the dominance of these tests.The Daily News covered this story last week: The number of correct answers needed to score a Level 2 to get promoted has sunk so low that a student can guess on the multiple choice … [Read more...]

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