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View Diary: Book Review: Linda Perlstein's "Tested" (92 comments)

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  •  Teachers (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BMarshall, AaronBa, ladybug53

    Books about NCLB should be written by teachers--it is their perspective that would be most telling.  They know what went on before the reporter/author got interested, before the politician devised this formula for "success."  

    As I retired teacher, my 2 cents, it's not all bad--but definitely, it's not a panacea.  I see nothing wrong with spending up to an hour a day in drill and test taking skills.  It's focused and can lead to a sense of accomplishment for both the student and the teacher.  However, tests should be changed yearly--drastically--to prevent teaching only to specific skills.

    If NCLB really wanted every child to keep up, it would mandate more integration.  Social skills are important also, as is having wealthy parents demanding good conditions for their children.  They have the clout to get what's needed and what's enjoyable.  Ghetto schools are ugly--no frills--no joy--and that screams out to the child--you are being left behind.

    I always end these discussions with--Fix the streets and the schools will get better.  It is the only way to have true equality.

    •  the Supreme Court has you on that one (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AaronBa, ladybug53, Spoonfulofsugar

      If NCLB really wanted every child to keep up, it would mandate more integration.

      Parents v. Seattle pretty much forbids integration efforts except where the public schools in question imitate the U of Michigan School of Law in the Grutter case, and design a program where "integration" is part of the pedagogy.

      Unfortunately, the curriculum of schools taking part in NCLB has one (and only one) goal: "Adequate Yearly Progress."  So it ain't going to happen until NCLB is gone.

      "How long? Not long." -- Martin Luther King, Jr.

      by Cassiodorus on Sun Jul 29, 2007 at 09:16:25 AM PDT

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    •  I work with teachers.... (6+ / 0-)

      who are trying hard- coming back to school to hone their skills.  They know many teachers in our state don't have the content knowlege or the teaching skills to do the best possible job.  They critically evaluate the curriculum put forward by the schools.  They meet to improve their knowlege and to offer each other support- working with the master teachers.  The tests help them judge how well they are teaching, and they are critical about the quality of the tests they are given as assessment tools.  They know there are parents and students who fulfill eery stereotype known, and then they speak with tremendous awe about the cluster of outstanding math students in one class- and the fantastic accomplishments of these young people.  I am so impressed by these teachers- and this is what the no child left behind programs should be spending their money on.  Getting teachers to be better at what they do- and rewarding the teachers who do so financially.  There are teachers not interested in these programs, and those teachers should not be punished if their students are learning well.  But at the same time, those teachers are in these programs because of state mandated educational standards for the teachers themselves.  A lot of our program assessments have been for the teachers themselves learning more math and now we are working on getting them to take the more innovative teaching techniques into the classroom.  No one really thinks drill drill drill is the only way to learn this sort of material.  

      I think we should fix the schools themselves- a lot of schools are asbestos ridden traps with dirty toilets and broken windows and bad heating and cooling systems.  there needs to be some sort of federal help to fix up these defective school buildings.  And huge schools are not as effective as smaller schools.  So the big consolidation projects that turn schools into mini college campuses shouldn't be as funded. Some of that was desegregation but not all of it.  

      You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you mad. Aldous Huxley

      by murrayewv on Sun Jul 29, 2007 at 09:25:27 AM PDT

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