Friday, November 07, 2008

Let's cut to the chase with National Standards...

National standards can reduce our tendency to reinvent the wheel in every state and increase competition among content publishers to do things that really help in the classroom. It won't limit teacher freedom and creativity, any more than using the "food pyramid" affects the meals I prepare. It will give us a common language and structure around which to share best practices.

4 approaches to doing this were laid out two years ago in a report by Fordham ( Standards Final PDF.pdf). Whatever you think of Fordham's "politics" around standards, they're right about the direction we need to take and, in truth, most state standards documents are evolving in a common direction anyway. Let's speed it up, and free those state education department curriculum experts up to spend less time rehashing the same debates and more time helping schools enact good curriculum and assessment.


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