Ozy And Millie: Accountability and standards

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  7 comments for “Ozy And Millie: Accountability and standards

  1. “Accountability”, no. But how about “The school needs to be held accountable if it doesn’t reach certain standards, which are determined through the use of standardized tests.”

    It’s not that hard. Once again, it refers to the SCHOOL, not the students.

    • They may be *attempting* to test the school, but administering tests to the school’s students mostly measures the student body’s collective willingness and/or capacity to learn/remember/guess information about a subject. It measures both of these things far more accurately than it measures any instructors’ ability to *teach* to standards.

      Obviously, in any standardized test pool (especially in one as big as the nation) the test results are going to be all over the place. No two students’ interests are exactly alike, and some kids have longer attention spans for certain subjects than for others. Some people simply have and maintain 0% interest in academic subjects throughout their lives; there is not much to be done about this.

      You cannot, in any way, limit a student’s personal range of interests to only what is presented in the classroom – and it is natural for people to daydream and tune out the things in their lives that seem exceptionally drab and boring to them.

      Education is participatory, mostly on the part of the student; the teacher can only do so much. You cannot either simply drag a person out of bed unpleasantly early, every day, over roughly 3/12 of their lives, and then expect them to be willing or excited to consume every bit of information slung at them willy-nilly (not that teaching isn’t methodical, but learning typically isn’t).

      You most certainly can’t expect them to remember it all, and you especially cannot expect them to desire to learn it from someone they *hate*. Standardized testing reinforces dislike of the person giving the test, because it is inherently boring, routine, mechanical and unpleasant (it doesn’t do too well at maintaining a students’ opinion of a teacher whose instruction they happen to enjoy, either).

      I am not trying to excuse those teachers who are incompetent to teach, but you cannot look only at the instructional side of the equation, and you cannot discriminate between the competent and incompetent teachers, if their students are equally unwilling to learn.

  2. Woah, so if all the students conspire to do really badly, the school will be ruined. Thank the powers that be for nerds.

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