Friday, July 7, 2017

SC Fails Students Still: More on Grade Retention and Misreading Literacy | radical eyes for equity

SC Fails Students Still: More on Grade Retention and Misreading Literacy | radical eyes for equity:

SC Fails Students Still: More on Grade Retention and Misreading Literacy

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But their remedies do not cure the disease: they merely prolong it. Indeed, their remedies are part of the disease.
Oscar Wilde (1891), The Soul of Man under Socialism
Bells will certainly continue to signal class changes in public schools all across South Carolina this fall, but there is a much more serious (and unwarranted) bell of doom for many third-graders because of SC’s punitive Read to Succeed legislation.
Paul Hyde’s Furman professor: Read to Succeed retention policy ‘a disaster’offers a primer on the politically and publicly popular move across the U.S. to retain students based in part or fully on third-grade high-stakes tests of reading.
Once again, literacy policy often fails to address valid literacy practices or to acknowledge that literacy proficiency is strongly correlated with systemic conditions beyond the walls of the school or the control of teachers.
Worksheets on literacy skills, test-prep for state assessments of reading and writing, linking teacher evaluations to students’ test scores, and retaining children are simply not only flawed literacy policies, but also negative influences on children’s literacy and academic achievement.
And decades of creating ever-new standards and then purchasing ever-new reading textbooks and programs have utterly failed children and literacy.
For about a century, in fact, we have known what is needed to help students develop literacy—but the political will remains lacking.
A robust literacy strategy for schools must include instead the following:
  • Addressing access to books in all children’s homes.
  • Insuring access to books in all children’s schools.
  • Providing all students ample and extended time in class to read by choice.
  • Guaranteeing every student balanced literacy instruction based on each student’s demonstrated literacy needs (not the prescriptions of literacy programs).
  • Discontinuing the standards and testing disaster dominating schools and classrooms by providing teachers the materials, time, and professional autonomy to teach literacy in evidence-based ways.
Just as education policy ignores a rich research base, political leaders and SC Fails Students Still: More on Grade Retention and Misreading Literacy | radical eyes for equity:

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