Friday, May 16, 2008

As posted on the Seattle Schools Blog

Superintendent Dr Maria Goodloe-Johnson of the Seattle Public Schools talked about attracting and retaining strong teachers, aligning the math and science curriculum,

OK - I give up.
Alignment with what??

Surely she can not be speaking to alignment with the National Math Advisory Panel recommendations in the document Foundations for Success published on March 13, 2008.

She allowed Linda Hoste and Rosalind Wise to deliver the Interactive Math Program sales pitch at the board's HS Math work session in April. Clearly no NMAP alignment there.

She is allowing Ms. Santorno to continue with the Everyday Math pacing plan. No NMAP alignment there.

She has not said that Schmitz Park can continue with the 100% Singapore math they used this 2007-2008 school year. Ms. Santorno may still order Schmitz Park to use Everyday Math next year. No NMAP alignment there. (It is now mid-May a decision will be coming when???)

It seems clear that Math alignment means everyone doing what SPS admin dictates. Everyone needs to be aligned with SPS Centralized Math whims.

Really folks that alignment is not going to improve math performance significantly in the SPS. It will however continue to drive teachers concerned about the math performance of their students into other school districts and to other states.

MG-J talked about attracting and retaining strong teachers -- obviously she was not talking about math teachers.

For K-3 success why not try following the advice of the largest study in the history of education.
PFT specifically addressed how to bring disadvantaged learners to academic success in the k-3 grades.

Typical of the SPS they ignore the results of the largest study in education history.

Project Follow Through

Doug Carnine

Foundations For Success from NMAP

2004 MSSG

The Math Underground


Anonymous said...

I think the evidence is telling - if you implement this curriculum in a low performing district, like Lancaster (50% Puerto Rican, but probably 3rd or 4th generation American) - you will show the most improvement overall - what is not reported are that the assumptions are all wrong. The textbooks apparently are so bad that students drop out or transfer to other schools. Students enrolling in college that manage to get a diploma despite the low academic programs have to enroll in remedial classrooms. And lets not forget that the standardized test scores show low performance overall, something also observed in Washington State. 51% achieve proficiency. Just a little above average. The similarities in math programs between Pittsburgh and Seattle Public Schools is uncanny. Even the consultants and reform players are practically the same. The only way we'll lose this movement is when they die from old age.

Anonymous said...

You know TV mainstream is not average. Its really a perspective of social reality coming from the richer segment of our society, disguised to look middle-class which candidly, I couldn't define what middle-class is anymore, not even in terms of home-ownership, which if you didn't own your home was once considered Un-American. As humorous as 'Married with Children' is - it is hardly realistic to assume that a shoe salesman could own a home and be the sole provider for his home. Not to mention two kids - one bright and other not-so bright.

If you look at the struggles of failing students, they are nothing at all like the stereotypical kids you see in media. For instance, many are hard-working and own their own cars. They struggle in school mostly because they are enrolled in independent study, have low reading skills, and begin acquiring some adult-like vices at an early age (if having children can be considered a vice - if you are 14 or 15 then it probably is)

I've known kids that only ate frozen burritoes in their bed room at home.

Even the horror genre you might see advertised is sort of a pathology of the rich that was mainstreamed into popular culture, only today you also have other examples like grand Theft Auto (fantasy or reality) its difficult to say anymore, since so much of this stuff gets acted out by our youth. Even 'drive by' has been mainstreamed into popular culture.

The phrase 'dumbing down' - assigning some value to the way schools were before the 30's and the way they are now may be a misnomer. Things are clearly not the same as they were 100 years ago. Some kids simply 'muddle through' school despite open rhetoric that you won't succeed unless you go to college (another gentrified myth).