In light of the recent articles highlighting research showing the failure of the standardized testing push in the United States, this look at a recent employer survey shines further light on the disconnect between the "real world" and "what's easy to measure."
As educators, it is our responsibility to prepare students for what comes after the traditional school years. So it would stand to reason that our curriculum would center around current research around the skills needed to be successful in today's economy. And that means we should be collaborating with large companies and employer sects to see what skills they are looking for. We should be researching the shifts and trends in the economy to steer kids in the directions of careers that have potential for robust growth.
But wait. We are not doing any of that. Nope. Instead, we still cling a 100+ year old philosophy that has seen very little upgrading. We all know the reasons why. "Big testing" dictates much of what happens and their products can only measure very basic (and mostly unimportant) things.
So "No Child Left Behind" didn't produce scores of students super prepared for the workforce and we didn't conquer the world in international test scores. This should further empower school leaders at the local level to do what's right for kids. Trust the real research and trust your gut. And guess what? States and Commonwealths are beginning to respond. Take a look at this link:
The choice is ours. Start small. Take a look at the "skills employers want" in the picture attached to the main article. Bring this list into your next set of classroom walkthroughs. Ask yourself, your teachers, and your students, "Does this lesson check off any of these boxes?" If it doesn't, well, let's make some changes.
"THe Boss" Jon Ross and "The Dr of Proctors," Nick Indeglio
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