An excerpt from ‘What Lies Ahead for America’s Children and Their Schools’
Common Core is now several years into implementation. Supporters have had a difficult time persuading skeptics that any positive results have occurred. The best evidence has been mixed on that question.
Advocates of the Common Core hope that the standards will eventually produce long term positive effects as educators learn how to use them. That’s a reasonable hypothesis. But it should now be apparent that a counter-hypothesis has equal standing: any positive effect of adopting Common Core may have already occurred.
The SAT is not designed to measure national achievement; the score losses from 2014 were miniscule; and most of the declines are probably the result of demographic changes in the SAT population.
CNN’s story relies on the results of one study that is limited in what it can tell us, but CNN even gets its main findings wrong.
This is part two of my analysis of instruction and Common Core’s implementation.
How decisions teachers make about instruction shape the implementation of the Common Core
The gender gap is large, worldwide, and persistent through the K-12 years. What should be done about it? Maybe nothing.
Eighth grade mathematics may be the single grade-subject combination most profoundly affected by the Common Core State Standards.
American adventurers have fanned out across the globe to bring back to the United States the lessons of other school systems. It might produce good journalism, but it also tends to produce very bad social science.
The belief that a particular approach to mathematics instruction—referred to over the past half-century as “progressive,” “constructivist,” “discovery,” or “inquiry-based”—is the answer to improving mathematics learning in the U.S. is not supported by evidence.
A look at key curricular decisions that will be encountered as CCSS makes its way through the school system and the potential political controversies that this process may provoke.
Recent stories in the popular press have featured children burdened with an enormous amount of homework, three hours or more per night. Are these students’ experiences typical or rare?
Teachers who seek to improve their own practice are primarily guided by common sense, intuition, word of mouth, personal experience, ideologically laden ideas about progressive or traditional instruction, the guidance of mentors, and folk wisdom—not a body of knowledge and practice that has been rigorously tested for its efficacy.
Shanghai has a school system that excludes most migrant students, the children of families that have moved to the city from rural areas of China. And now for three years running, the OECD and PISA continue to promote a distorted picture of Shanghai’s school system by remaining silent on the plight of Chinese migrant children.
It’s heartening to note that as the use of ability grouping is increasing a new generation of researchers is bringing sophisticated statistical techniques (and open minds) to bear on questions involving both ability grouping and tracking.
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