A Knox County educator writes about the purpose of school in a blog post on SPEAK’s blog.
Here’s a bit of what he had to say:
The best answer to why that I have ever heard came from a student. This student had just moved here from another country and was very frustrated, bored and confused by the test prep, test based high stakes accountability and focus that she was encountering for the first time. In expressing her frustration to me she said, “I thought school was supposed to be about us learning to be the best person we can be?” Nothing could be more true. When all is said and done, everything I do as a teacher, everything we do as a school should be in support of that ultimate purpose, helping every child become the best person they can be.
What are your thoughts? What is the purpose of our public schools?
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So very true. Those of us in the profession understand that, or at least we did. Those outside the system have warped the ideas of assessment. Assessment used to be about identifying where students were academically, identifying weaknesses or gaps in their preparation and teaching to address those short comings and moving students forward toward that goal of being “the best person we can be?” Assessment now is tied to holding teachers, administrators and districts accountable. WE now take benchmark test to prepare for the test we are to take. And every test has a cost. Both in time, energy and money. How nice would it be if we could reclaim that lost test time for instruction. Oh well, perhaps the tide will turn before I retire.
“he” not “she”
Sorry — there was no author attribution on the blog post.
No problem, thank you for your commitment to our children.