Sunday, March 23, 2014

LISTEN TO DIANE RAVITCH 3-23-14 Diane Ravitch's blog | A site to discuss better education for all

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Just 27% in Rasmussen Poll Think SAT Should Be Major Factor in College Admission
Bad news for the All-New, Revamped SAT: Only 27% in the most recent Rasmussen poll think that the SAT should be a major factor in college admission. Actually, it may be even less than 27%. According to Rasmussen, “…most Americans don’t think the SATs are an accurate reflection of a student’s abilities, nor do they believe they should be a major factor in college admissions. A new Rasmussen Reports

Peter Greene: Why Standardized Testing Sucks
Peter Greene here explains what most teachers know about standardized testing. It is a monumental waste of time and money. It doesn’t reflect what students were taught or learned. He writes: “Standardized testing is completely inauthentic assessment, and students know that. The young ones may blame themselves, but students of all ages see that there is no connection between the testing and their e

Common Core for Commoners, Not My School!
This is an unintentionally hilarious story about Common Core in Tennessee. Dr. Candace McQueen has been dean of Lipscomb College’s school of education and also the state’s's chief cheerleader for Common Core. However, she was named headmistress of private Lipscomb Academy, and guess what? She will not have the school adopt the Common Core! Go figure.

Vivian Connell: The Face of a Hero
On February 11 of this year, I met Vivian Connell. She was on a panel at the North Carolina Emerging Issues Forum moderated by John Merrow. Vivian was one of six people who explained why she left teaching. She described the disrespect in which the current leadership of North Carolina holds teachers and the deterioration of working conditions. She said she decided to go to law school, yet she misse
Teacher: When Will We Be Able to Think of Children Again?
This teacher explains: She loves teaching. She loves her students, but she wants the high-stakes testing and the Race to the Top to stop. She knows that her students are set up to fail. It is all so wrong, so mean-spirited, so cruel. This is what she knows: “I am a NYS certified public school teacher teaching 3rd grade in an economically disadvantaged school district in rural upstate New York. I h

Jason Stanford: A Hard Choice in Texas: $100 for a Graphic Calculator or $15 for an App?
Jason Stanford is a political journalist in Texas who keeps a close watch on the nexus between money, politics, and education. He is especially interested in how lobbyists shape decisions about where the education money should be spent. In this post, he sees the usual lobbyists pressing to make more money for their clients: Forcing schools to buy a graphing calculator for every single 8th grader i
From One Teacher to Another: VAM is Junk Science
After Kafkateach stated that his/her VAM scores were poor because he/she is a teacher of gifted students and have no way to go higher, this response came from Chris in Florida: We’re in this together here in Florida, kafkateach. I am National Board certified, have 2 masters degrees (only 1 is in education), 20+ years of experience, and was named a Teacher of the Year by three different programs in
Mother: My Son Hates School, How Can I Help Him?
This comment came from “Albany Mom”:   I agree with the writer that “if parents do not advocate for their children, who will?” However, I need help knowing how to advocate for my child. Who is going to help? My husband and I have struggled with the demons of Common Core this year, watching our 9 year old son sink into what looks like depression. We can’t afford private school, so I have coerced, o
Students Organize to Resist Destructive “Reforms”
Students have the power to stop the destructive forces that are ruining their education and treating them as data points, not humans who want to learn. They are holding a conference in Los Angeles, where they will discuss strategies to resist school closings, high-stakes testing, data mining, and other current efforts to turn their educational opportunity into an opportunity for entrepreneurs to u
Ohio: You Can’t Make This Stuff Up
A reader in Ohio writes:   This is one of the people who is making law on public schools in Ohio: “Powell legislator stirs controversy over views on public schools Two weeks after calling public education “socialism” and saying it should be privatized, state Rep. Andrew Brenner said of those criticizing him with vulgarities: “I’m guessing those people had a public education.” The Powell Republican
Florida Teacher Evaluated on Scores of Students She Never Taught: Junk Science Alert!
Value-added-measurement (VAM) produce ratings that are inaccurate and unstable. In Florida, about half of teachers don’t teach tested subjects, so they are assigned scores based on the scores of their school, meaning they are rated in relation to the scores of students they never taught and subjects they never taught. This Florida teacher explains why she was rated a 23.6583 out of 40, even though
LISTEN TO DIANE RAVITCH ALL WEEK LONG Diane Ravitch's blog 3-22-14 #thankateacher #EDCHAT #P2
Diane Ravitch's blogLISTEN TO DIANE RAVITCH ALL WEEK LONGDIANE RAVITCH'S BLOGReader: Brookings Economist Sees CCSS as Entry Point for “Big Data” MachineReader Laura H. Chapman shares this exchange with an economist at the Brookings Institution about the Common Core: I had a brief email exchange with Darrell West of the Brookings about the CCSS. He wants the CCSS to be standardized so that test sco