When I was in Colorado last week I read an article that made me a little surprised and slightly smug. It was about how the CSAP scores had flatlined. The CSAP (Colorado Student Assessment Program) is the test they use to measure progress for NCLB (No Child Left Behind). Here I was in the land of education reform and the scores had flatlined.
My district has hired consultants from Colorado and act like they’re the next best thing since sliced bread. Last year I even had one of the so-called experts in my room to observe me. The guy was there for about 10 minutes and wrote a glowing review of my work. Great. He thought I did wonderful stuff. C’mon. He was there for 10 minutes.
So there I was, reading the Denver Post about the disappointing scores of the Colorado students. All of this effort has been put into education reform and it’s not working. To me, the reform seems to be directed at the teachers and how they do their jobs and get paid for them.
I’m not saying that the education system doesn’t need some kind of reform. Everything needs to evolve with the changing times. But placing the responsibility solely on teachers for how kids perform is not the answer. Education is a societal issue. Society has to value it. It is a cooperative effort between the parents, teachers and the community. Success is going to be elusive unless we can incorporate everyone into the equation.