Get Accountability Frankenstein. Understanding and Taming the PDF

By Sherman Dorn

To appreciate the present second at school responsibility, one needs to comprehend the bigger contradictions in schooling politics. responsibility Frankenstein offers a broader standpoint at the institution responsibility debate by means of exploring the contradictions inherent in high-stakes trying out. responsibility Frankenstein explains the historic and social origins of test-based responsibility: the political roots of responsibility, why we belief try out rankings whereas we mistrust lecturers, the assumptions at the back of formulaic responsibility platforms, and the weaknesses with the present carrot-and-stick method of motivating lecturers. responsibility Frankenstein solutions the questions of educators and fogeys who are looking to comprehend the origins of responsibility. This e-book demanding situations the ideals of fierce advocates and rivals of highstakes trying out. It offers a rescue plan for responsibility after the mess ups of high-stakes checking out, a plan to make responsibility shrewdpermanent, democratic, and genuine.

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Extra resources for Accountability Frankenstein. Understanding and Taming the Monster

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But the rationale for accountability was not entirely about human capital in the 1960s and 1970s. A minority of accountability’s proponents focused on testing to make sure that everyone receives a decent education. Today, civil-rights rhetoric is a dominant theme in the national debate over accountability, but that was not the case in the 1960s or 1970s. Nonetheless, a civil-rights rationale for testing did appear early in the discussions over the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. During legislative hearings in 1965, Senator Robert Kennedy pushed for annual testing as part of the evaluation of Title I programs: If I lived in the community where the $2 million was being wasted, I would like to know something about that.

State officials have been willing to encourage federal activism when it facilitated their education policy agenda, but only within limits. Whether framed as “national standards” or a “voluntary national test,” both Democrats and Republicans fiercely defended the prerogative of states to define what a good education was. Any effort to create a national standard or test would run into the same political minefield (Mathews, 2006b). Even defined at the state level, much of that defense of local control is more symbolic than practical.

David Tyack and Larry Cuban (1995) described this phenomenon as the grammar of schooling, a shared definition and a political inertia resisting dramatic school reform. They saw this effect as generally beneficial, mostly restricting reforms to incremental changes (which they saw as the better path to improving education). Seen more broadly, however, the policy feedback between standardized schooling and education debates may not be as healthy as Tyack and Cuban describe. Inertia is not always productive.

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Accountability Frankenstein. Understanding and Taming the Monster by Sherman Dorn


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