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testing
I am sickened by a news report from Reuters on the rapid rise in the use of standardized testing at the kindergarten level.  The push for academic accountability in the higher grades has been essentially pushed downwards through the grade levels and now sits like a 10-ton block of steel on what used to be literally a “children’s garden”...
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Teachers have been taking it on the chin a lot lately with calls for the abolishment of tenure, and its replacement with what have been called “value-added models” of teaching evaluation.  Basically, what this means is that teachers are going to be increasingly assessed in terms of their ability to raise the standardized test scores of their students. ...
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There’s a whole new climate of opinion that’s been sweeping over the educational scene in America these days.  It’s all about accepting as perfectly normal the creation of a monstrous monolithic “learning” enterprise from preschool to post-college that consists of uniform standards, standardized testing, the collection of “data”, and the evaluation of teachers based on test scores (a practice incongruously called “value-added”).  I find this...
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Thirty-five years ago, when I was at the beginning of my teaching career, Piaget was all the rage.  We read his books, and puzzled over how observation of children interacting with real life situations could enable us to understand the development of their minds.  We also were able to catch the tail end of interest...
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I was just reading an article in The Watertown (NY) Daily Times about a seventeen-year-old named Christopher Durgen who has ADHD and autism.  As a young child, he had trouble getting along with classmates and was frequently suspended from school.  That all changed around the end of his sophomore year in high school when he disovered...
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