"It goes on one at a time,
it starts when you care
to act. It starts when you do
it again after they said no,
it starts when you say We
and know who you mean, and each
day you mean one more."
Margie Piercy, "The Low Road"

A political poem, but one this week has me thinking about changes in education.  In New York State (as elsewhere) they are happening fast and furious without someone helping teachers understand in the bigger context of things what is going on.

This week, as districts are being impacted by the decision to change cut-scores on the NYS Grades 3-8 assessments in Math and ELA, there is an under-current of panic.  Of frustration.  Of confusion.  And I am not sure that in the end we are keeping the kids in mind.

In theory, these changes that are coming at us are intended to be what is best for kids.  I absolutely have to believe that.  We do need to look at what we teach and how we assess and ensure that we are producing citizens who will be able to succeed and prosper in life after high school.  That is our responsibility as educators. 

And as educators, we know what works with our students.  They are unique and there are no two classrooms across this state, country or world that are identical.  We need to take the "bounded autonomy" we have in our schools and classrooms and serve those students first.

We need to persevere through these changes.  More than that - we need to investigate them, question them, implement them and reflect upon them.  We need to remember that we serve people - often very little people - and that we have a big responsibility. To them.

No comments: