Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Tuesday Open Thread

Civics is coming back in a big way and hooray for that.  In this day and time, we need smart citizens.  The NY Times had this article today.

Only nine states and the District of Columbia require a full year of civics education, according to the Center for American Progress; 30 states mandate a half-year and 11 states have no mandates. Only one state, Maryland, and the District of Columbia, require community service and civics courses before a student graduates.

The reasons are varied, but many say that the increased focus on science and mathematics, as well as standardized tests, has squeezed out time that once would have been devoted to such courses.
Scores from the National Assessment of Educational Progress state that in 2014, only 18 percent of 8th grade students scored “at” or “above proficient” in American History and 23 percent scored “at” or “above proficient” in civics.

A survey last year by the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania found that 37 percent of those surveyed couldn’t name any of the rights guaranteed under the First Amendment and about 75 percent don’t know all three branches of government.
SPS is working on this issue as we speak with Director Rick Burke taking the lead for the Board.  From Web Hutchins, Ballard teacher, who champions and leads the Civics for All program:
  • King County Elections is doing all the publishing for the Ballard election, including custom Student Voters Pamphlets and ballots
  • Ballard high is doing an all school mock election pilot this fall
At a recent C&I committee meeting, there was discussion of this and it was noted they didn't have money for banners for schools to spark interest.  Then, later in the discussion, it was noted they wouldn't have bought them anyway because of what they said. I'm curious what they could have said that would give pause to district administrators.

Fascinating reading on where girls and boys do better at mathWhere Boys Outperform Girls in Math:Rich, White and Suburban Districts.
In much of the country, the stereotype that boys do better than girls at math isn’t true – on average, they perform about the same, at least through eighth grade. But there’s a notable exception.

In school districts that are mostly rich, white and suburban, boys are much more likely to outperform girls in math, according to a new study from Stanford researchers, one of the most comprehensive looks at the gender gap in test scores at the school district level.

“Something operates to help boys more than girls in some places and help girls more than boys in other places.”
You may recall I had asked "What is your why?" in an effort to try to get answers to questions you may have before the school year ends.  Sadly, not going to happen.  SPS lost its Communications person who handles that work and it looks like they won't be able to answer most questions. Sorry.
What's on your mind?


Math Braider said...

What's on my mind? This article from Canada's The Conversation on "Mathematics talent abounds in Indigenous communities"

Anonymous said...

Yet another failure from Gates Foundation.

Gates effective teaching initiative fails to improve outcomes

Yet another waste of time, money, and effort.

Are these Gates folks ever held accountable for ongoing poor performance?

--- Dan Dempsey

Anonymous said...

Here is a hotlink to =>

. Mathematics talent abounds in Indigenous communities

It is from Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, BC.

-- Dan Dempsey