Thursday, June 13, 2013

As a Parent, I've Found This to be Generally True

Bill Fitzgerald:

And this is my single biggest take away from the event: teachers are left explaining a system they didn't develop and didn't choose. Teachers become the public face of policy decisions that originate thousands of miles away. When policy makers create a mess - and I would describe a set of standards that are poorly understood, backed by curriculum that is not yet defined, assessed by testing instruments that do not yet exist, as "a mess" - teachers are the ones who attempt to explain it. Our teachers are doing a great job. I hope, at some point, our policy makers catch up.

Not about Common Core specifically, but what's going on in general with curriculum and instruction. They tend to be parroting too much technical detail to parents that the teachers probably don't fully understand/believe.

I guess that it doesn't bother me too much indicates that (like everybody else) I do believe in the importance of some abstract "teacher quality." They seem like good teachers to me, so a little annoying technical jabber I can ignore.


Mike said...

How will the daily experiences of students change as a result of the ELA CCSS?

Big picture, I hear: more rigor, better assessments, higher depth of knowledge, we'll be better positioned to score well on international benchmarks.

This is all abstract, though.

In the weeds, I hear: "close reading," "informational text," "citing evidence from the text," "assessing writing conventions within authentic responses to text," etc.

This all sounds pretty good? I know you have problems with close reading.

How do standards and achievement interact? Put more bluntly, how do standards and teaching practice interact?

Leroy's Mom said...

In California elementary schools we've moved towards Standards-Based report cards. I can't tell you what a PITA they are to do, and as a parent, even though I do these same type of marks myself, I never feel like I've got a great grasp on how my child is doing.
Example, his middle school which has classes by subject, used this marking system. This meant that he got 4-5 marks for each general standard at grade level for that subject. So he would have 3 marks for history. And he was expected to "pass" each section. If he got behind, it was a mess because history instruction is sequential, so it's not like you can go back and make it up. I think that begins to give you an idea of how messed up this is, so I'll just stop here.