Taiwan has a powerful parent union that now appears to cause at least as much harm as it does good.
You think parent participation is a good thing, right, and schools should have more of it? Of course you do. Just as you surely want parents to have more choice among schools. You may even favor the parent-trigger mechanism for freeing a school from its district and turning it into a charter. Me, too.
Here’s some of what I’ll bet you don’t want: parental pressure tying school leaders and teachers into knots such that they cannot discipline or punish students, cannot make them stay after school, cannot under any circumstances expel or suspend them, cannot even confiscate their cell phones—and only at their peril can give them low marks or words of criticism.
When it comes to math skills, Alabama performs like Armenia, Mississippi comes close to Dubai, Washington, D.C., performs like Ukraine, and Massachusetts is just one rung below Japan, according to a study released by the U.S.
Pretty smart, actually, if you don't cherry pick the evidence.
For the past couple of weeks, Bob Somerby has been reviewing Amanda Ripley's new book, The Smartest Kids in the World. I haven't linked to any of Somerby's increasingly acerbic posts about Ripley because I haven't read the book and can't vouch for how fair they are. But one point he makes is simple enough: for her international comparisons, Ripley relies entirely on a single test, the PISA, on which American students do relatively poorly. She ignores others with longer pedigrees, like the TIMSS, on which Americans do fairly well.
The Programme for International Student Achievement (PISA) will release its latest scores in December. The scores reported for Shanghai will not be representative of China as a whole although media coverage will suggest that they are.
Why are the positives being treated as if they're negatives?
When I tell you that adult science literacy has nearly tripled in the past 25 years, that should be considered a good thing. And when I tell you that funding at the National Institutes of Health has gone up 50% since 2001, that is also a good thing.
We’ve known for decades that international students outperform American classes on standardized testing. So why haven’t we done more to emulate the education systems of those superior countries?
That question stumps Romesh Ratnesar, deputy editor of Bloomberg Businessweek, who joined New America NYC on Thursday evening to discuss New America Fellow Amanda Ripley’s new book, The Smartest Kids in the World.
Parent Cortical Mass's insight:
Amanda Ripley's book keeps the global gap in education on the front burner in the edu-blogosphere. Nice article by Madeline McSherry.
The international test scores are poor economic barometers. What matters most in the decades ahead is the extent to which we cultivate creativity, ingenuity, curiosity, innovation, and thinking differently.
An alarming report shows that American workers are poorly skilled compared with competitors abroad.
"Americans who are 55 to 65 perform about average in literacy skills, but young Americans rank the lowest among their peers in the countries surveyed. "
Parent Cortical Mass's insight:
Interesting that older americans scored higher on the skills test than younger americans. Yet, it seems that younger americans have a mindset that assumes current digital tools, and operate differently than many older americans. Is that skill set measured? Is that skills set overvalued? Many questions...
The scores for what's billed as the world's most comprehensive adult skills exam are out -- and it's bad news for Americans.
The test is designed to gauge literacy and other skills necessary in the global economy. Statisticians have called it the richest international comparison in cognitive skills and human capital. PIAAC comes from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development's Andreas Schleicher. Schleichler created the Program for International Student Assessment, one of the most influential tests of 15-year-old students across the globe.