Friday, May 03, 2013

Lynne Varner gets one right

Lynne Varner of the Seattle Times wrote an editorial, Moving education theory from the lab to the classroom, in which she got it mostly right.

She now seems to support making education reforms based on research. This is a big change from her previous support for education reforms that had no research to support them or reforms that were discredited by the research.

If you can get past the one ridiculous and self-serving claim "I’ve written about education long enough to have a sense of what works." the rest of the column is pretty good.

And here's the interesting thing: the researching did not support mandated retention for third graders who don't pass a state proficiency test. They didn't support giving schools letter grades. They didn't support granting unaccountable hire/fire authority to principals, and they didn't support the dismantling and privatization of our public school system. No. They didn't support any of the things that Ms Varner has historically supported. Instead, they said that their research supported creating relationships between teachers and students and focusing more on student motivation. Gee. How about that? The researchers seem to think that changes in the classroom, rather than the boardroom, is how we improve outcomes for students.


Unknown said...

Interesting TED talk here by Rita Pierson about the importance of learning and relationships. It's common sense, but, you know . . . you can't measure it.


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