This is Gene McCracken's Typepad Profile.
Join Typepad and start following Gene McCracken's activity
Join Now!
Already a member? Sign In
Gene McCracken
Recent Activity
I suppose "what's wrong" could also be viewed as a strength - the wide variability in blogs and comments. Some seem as trite and shallow as talk radio and some as insightful and thought provoking as a good NPR story.
1 reply
I am reflecting on Fullan and Breakthrough. My sense is that he might counsel us to "yes - work with small groups". But I think he might suggest that these small groups be homogeneous based on "what they aren't understanding". My concern is that these kids "on the bubble" are probably not all missing the same stuff. Are they using formative assessments for the grouping or simply the aggregate "almost made it" score. I think this is the concept of "graininess" - too aggregate - not broken down. Will the intervention be focused on focused precision instruction or is it just spending more time with a few kids? Overall nothing wrong with small groups; concern with how they are formed. Is the grouping criteria instructionally sound?
1 reply
Sounds like verbatim McIntire - Phase 2 "The overriding goal of stage two schools is to find the most effective ways for the school to achieve AYP. They use data to answer questions such as: How many students do we need to score proficient or above on the state high-stakes test? How many students are currently performing at this level? Which students are on the margin of performance level? How many of them can get to the standard if given appropriate special attention? How many students does each teacher need to "contribute" to reach the total? Schools in stage two use data to squeeze the most out of their students' performance and thereby get as many as possible over the next bar." Schools at this stage are looking for the low hanging fruit. Interesting that teachers seemed resistive. Wondered if it was simple the change or perhaps an equity issue. Some kids could get short changed. Recall Saunders Value Added work found teachers who focused on the high, or the low or the middle. Also sounds like selection is based on summative assessment; not clear how they will focus on what the marginal kids need to grasp. Will need some formative work to help isolate the what
1 reply
Sylvia, great comments! Forces me to think about why I put the post together. I was thinking about whether "research, data, evidence, and decision" are institutionalized into our systems - evaluation, training and continuing education. I was pleased that all 4 showed up in the Standards, although I thought the context of "evidence" was not what I might have hoped. I guess the answer in part depends on whether standards focus on the "ends" - students and learning or on the methods of getting there - the "means". Evidenced based strategies and data driven decision making are two critical "means" of getting good outcomes - the ends. From outside education, I learned that good methods yield good results over the long haul. Good results without good methods possible? Yeah - random luck, unsustainable heroic efforts or fraudulent results (cooked the books!) I guess I'd prefer standards that include both methods and results. Yeah - they would be longer; might be worth it though. Will the Standards get us to excellence? Or do they describe the bare minimum to keep the license? Perhaps the standards function is to describe the floor - the tolerable mediocrity - below which society needs to be protected - loss of ability to practice. If licensing standards are that floor - and some would argue that is their function - then where in society do standards for excellence get articulated? Do we rely on the professional association(s)? Thanks for the comment - helped me to think about this more. Gene To: genemac110@msn.com Subject: [Awesome data-driven educators] Sylvia Bergeson submitted a comment to 'Iowa Standards for School Leaders'. Date: Wed, 23 Sep 2009 19:53:35 -0700 From: typepad@sixapart.com TypePad HTML Email NEW! More options for replying to comments via email: To reply privately to the commenter, click on the commenter's email address below. To reply publicly on your blog, reply to this email. A new comment from “Sylvia Bergeson” was received on the post “Iowa Standards for School Leaders” of the blog “Awesome data-driven educators”. Comment: The words community, students, staff, and learning all stand out in the wordle. Even if the explicit words of research, data, evidence, and decision are not dominant words, aren't they tied to the paramount words - students, community, learning, and staff? I think they are. You can analyze anything and find something that needs improvement. If you want in-depth definitions, you would have a much longer document to read. Commenter name: Sylvia Bergeson Commenter email: bergesonsy@yahoo.com IP address: 75.162.3.41 Authentication: None Enjoy! The TypePad Team P.S.: Learn more about replying to comments. Published Unpublish Delete Mark as Spam Edit Comment Six Apart, creators of Movable Type, Vox and TypePad. 548 4th Street, San Francisco, CA 94107 Manage Notifications | Support | Terms of Service | Privacy Policy
1 reply
Hi Josh, be interesting to look at your 8th and 11th grade data over time - 8 -10 years to see if a chronic situation or more recent. What has happened over time at Atlantic? So many things can effect the data! How it was collected, who was tested, changes in texts, teachers, curriculum.... Goes on and on. task is to isolate the root causes! Also we need to appreciate the natural variation in data - if we listen to the data is it sending us a signal (information) or it is just random chatter. We humans love to chase single year (time period) changes! Some old saying like "one data point does not a trend make". Looking forward to this class and learning with you!
1 reply
Hi Betsy - fellow DMPSer! Interested in "determining student groups" - how might you determine them, sub-groups within a classroom, how frequently, and how would you use the info. For what purpose?
1 reply
Heard this great interview last eve on NPR re Cell Phone use in Health Care. Helped me to appreciate how we have just started to tap the potential. Thought if I was still teaching math, I might have kids take a picture of one example of an algorithm of their choice to help cement the technique. Just one example. Could assemble artifacts on the cell phone... Link is: http://thestory.org/archive/the_story_797_New_Ideas_In_Nursing.mp3/view
1 reply
Two quotes come to mind - 1. Great minds discuss ideas, average minds discuss events, small minds discuss people. Credited to Eleanor Roosevelt, but disputed. 2. “This is the true joy in life – that being used for a purpose recognized by your self as a mighty one - that being a force of nature, instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that that the world will not devote itself to making you happy. I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the whole community and as long as I live it is my privilege to do for it whatever I can. I want to be thoroughly used up when I die. For the harder I work the more I live.” - George Bernard Shaw Allow me to think big and please spare me those "little clods" - We got some big thinking to do!
Toggle Commented May 13, 2009 on Rise up at Dangerously Irrelevant
1 reply
I luv NPR! Check out the math guy - Keith Devlin - on "What do I need algebra for? - http://www.npr.org/templates/player/mediaPlayer.html?action=1&t=4&islist=false?- to be able to use (and create with) spreadsheets! Five minutes - worth the listen. TI is Texas Instruments to the math dep't. It is technology non-integration is many ways. A highly specialized tool confined to a single content area. I luv graphing calculators don't get me wrong, but I can do most of it on excel and have a skill that is marketable. (And it is readily available to many/most - no added cost.)
1 reply
Chapter 7 of Kotter's book on a Sense of Urgency is on dealing with the "no-no's" - folks who are trying to kill a sense of urgency for your vision. If I had a choice on getting rid of a no-no or a bad teacher (by the current paradigm), I'd get rid of the no-no - more long term damage. The person voted off the island might not be the same person voted off the ship trying to sail around the world. The question is key - the 10% of today's poorest performers or the 10% who will get in the way of getting better. The idea that "bad apple management" will get get you to GREAT is not well founded!
1 reply