There are no quick fixes to public education. There is, however, at least one improvement schools can make immediately.
In the late 1980s, the world was faced with a seemingly insurmountable excess of man-made halocarbon refrigerants, solvents and propellants that were destroying the ozone layer. The solution: end, immediately, all use of these chemicals globally. We did. And it worked.
In the early 2000s, No Child Left Behind propelled data-driven instruction to the forefront. For three years, test scores plummeted, then stabilized for three years, and has been on an anemic rise since.
The advent of Common Core did not eliminate data-driven instruction. In fact, it gained importance.
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The one thing no education leader seems to acknowledge is the profound and undeniable conclusion of the data-driven era. To wit, data collected over the past 15 years has proven unequivocally that data-driven instruction has been a complete and utter failure – and like the CFCs, HCFCs, freons and halons that were destroying the ozone layer, data-driven instruction must be immediately eradicated.
Teaching is an art not a system. We should want our teachers to adapt, improvise and create. Instead we corral them in data-driven conformity.
James Carson, Clovis