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Here are the top ten articles for the School Reform Site! These rankings are live and get reset at the beginning of each month, so check back often to see what your fellow visitors are most interested in!
1. Cursive Writing Controversy
Cursive writing is just one style of handwriting, but many people seem to think that it is the only kind. North Carolina legislators have passed a law requiring that all fifth graders must be able to write in cursive.
2. Educational Malpractice K-3
In addition to the Common Core Standards created by corporate consultants, additional requirements are being placed on schools by state legislators and political appointees. The latest is the intrusion of keyboarding instruction for children K-3 who should be learning how to write.
3. What is Liberal Arts Education and Who Needs It?
The term Liberal Arts refers to the academic subjects that include language, literature, science, math, and history. In the past, an acquaintance with all these subjects was considered the mark of an educated person. Today's idea of "an educated person" seems to have changed.
4. What is STEM?
STEM is an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. It has become a kind of mantra for business leaders and politicians who want more children to pursue careers in those subjects. A danger is that STEM is seen by some as being of more value than subjects in the Liberal Arts.
5. Professional Educational Jargon Masks Meaning
The new Common Core Standards are--like all the reforms since the 1920s-- riddled with Edu-speak. Parents need to insist that their questions about their childrenís school progress are answered in plain English.
6. Same Sex Education
Same-sex classrooms were long the norm. U.S. public education adopted the coeducational model at the end of the 19th century. Thanks to changes in American culture, it's probably time to return to the single-sex model, at least from grades 7-12.
7. Common Core Misinterpretation
Workshops about the new Standards are being held for classroom teachers around the country. Unfortunately, some of the administrators conducting them have little understanding of what they mean. Parents and teachers who don't want to be misled will have to study them for themselves.
8. Poor Reading Instruction Perpetuates Poverty
Itís no accident that the greatest percentage of illiteracy is to be found in the poorest segments of our population. The cause is related to a method of beginning reading instruction that penalizes the children of the poor.
9. Public School and Religious Belief
Public education is like public transportation. Passengers have to go where the bus goes. Travelers who want to go where the bus doesnít go must make other arrangements.
10. What is Proficiency?
Every state is permitted by law to define "reading proficiency" according to their own guidelines. As a result, states often rate their children at a higher level of proficiency than the NAEP does. Parents must adopt their own guidelines and test their children themselves.
Be sure to visit the School Reform Archives for all the articles!
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