Wednesday, December 7, 2016

CURMUDGUCATION: ESSA Won't Spur "Best Practices"

CURMUDGUCATION: ESSA Won't Spur "Best Practices":

ESSA Won't Spur "Best Practices"

Eric Kalenze, Director of Education Solutions at the Search Institute, is guest-blogging at Rick Hess's EdWeek spot this week. His interest leans towards questions of research and best practices and how any of those things ever hope to line up with actual classrooms. Today he's asking one particularly interesting question--

Will ESSA's Evidence Requirements Spur Actual Best Practices? comes with its own answer included-- no. Kalenze wants to jump ahead to the answer.

His premise itself is a bit faulty-- he concludes that best practices are not in use in classrooms because of this:

If the practices and ideals that feel right and we continually work to execute are indeed 'best', how can we continue to show weakly in international comparisonsleave scores of the same populations behind, and not see progress jump more steeply over time on internal measurements?

He's missing the more obvious answer. If everything I know tells me that my Big Stick is three feet long, and I pull out a tape measure and that tape measure tells me it's not three feet long at all, I should be looking at the tape measure. Kalenze is starting with the premise that things like PISA and Big Standardized Tests scores are an accurate and complete measure of student achievement and educational attainment. There is no reason to believe that they are such a measure, and in fact the discontinuity that Kalenze brings up is one more reason to suspect that they are NOT a good measure 
CURMUDGUCATION: ESSA Won't Spur "Best Practices":

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