Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Out of Our Minds

In reading Sir Ken Robinson's book, Out of Our Minds, I came across a section that talks about connecting education, business, and culture.  In this section, Robinson states that policy makers typically emphasize a small group of subjects that, "tie schools up in a culture of standardized testing and limit the discretion of educators to make professional judgments about how and what to teach."  In my whopping two years as a school leader, I have committed myself to trusting the professional judgment of the faculty and staff of NSE.  The most important thing that I can do is hire and maintain highly qualified and ethically driven people to do what is best for elementary children.

Robinson goes on to talk about what business leaders desire when it comes to human resources.  They "urgently need: people who are literate, numerate, who can analyze information and ideas; who can generate new ideas of their own and help to implement them; who can communicate clearly and work well with other people."  To be honest I am not so sure that is what we always assess (PASS, MAP, etc...).  The good news is that the common core standards and assessment (Smarter Balance) seem to be heading in the right direction.    

Robinson states that parents want children who can be economically independent.  They want an education system that will identify their child's unique talents and to lead a life that has meaning and purpose.  Does our current education system support such an effort?  If you get a chance, watch this video of Cain's Arcade.  This is a great example of how to tap into a "child's" passion and inspire him to become or accomplish something great.

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