Friday, January 09, 2009

When Will Andy Rotherham Stop Propping Up the Failed Status Quo and Embrace Reform?


...Rotherham says,

There are also real technical and logistical challenges the movement must overcome. Outside of intensive writing assignments, measuring many of these skills in a large scale or standardized way is difficult. As my colleague Elena Silva described in a recent analysis it is possible to design assessments that test both content and skills like critical thinking or problem solving. But unless these measurements are carefully designed, students can fake knowledge on many exercises intended to measure skills, again shortchanging content. In any case, most states are ill-equipped to implement such assessments today and too many teachers are not prepared to use them or teach this way today.

In other words, we should not teach what we can not easily measure. To argue that we should not teach higher level thinking because our tests are inadequate and teachers lack preparation is advocacy for the status quo - a declining spiral of testable mediocrity and irrelevance.

Well put.

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