How’s That Script Working Out?
Posted by aphillieteacher on January 17, 2011
About a month ago I posted my angry response to the district’s command: “Do not teach literature or critical thinking or anything to do with gaining knowledge or learning about the world. Certainly don’t let them discover the wonder and beauty of American writing.” Instead they mandate that every week
1. the kids read a non-fiction text selected by the district
2. write a 5 paragraph response to a canned prompt
3. track their scored “progress” on a district-made table
what our highly-paid experts in the district office forgot was allowing time to conference with our students and give them personal feedback.
What the kids get is a 14 point rubric sheet with four items checked off. I try to add comments or circle particular items that need attention but honestly, our kids zoom to their score and look at little else.
Result: they’re not making any progress. Week after week they enter nearly the same scores as the previous week, all because I never get the chance to say “Here’s what’s going wrong with your (topic sentences) (transitions) (conclusions)” And with 90 something of these to grade every week, I’m tired.
End Result: everyone is frustrated – me, helplessly watching my kids make the same errors every week, the kids because they don’t see any results and they’re damn tired of this nonsense and finally the District because there wasn’t any change in scores.
Obviously this will somehow be my fault.