Direct Teaching vs. Facilitating Learning

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  1. Adam's Apple
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    Education Dogmas
    by Thomas Sowell for Capitalism Magazine
    July 18, 2005

    What is mere evidence compared to education dogmas?

    There have been many bitter complaints from teachers and principals about the Bush administration's "No Child Left Behind" act -- and more specifically about having to "teach to the test" instead of doing whatever teachers and principals want to do. Now the results are in.

    Not only have test scores in math and reading shown "solid gains" in the words of the New York Times, young black students have "significantly narrowed the gap" between themselves and white students. All this is based on official annual data from 28,000 schools across the country.

    What is especially revealing is that it is the young black students who have made the largest gains while older minority students "scored as far behind whites as in previous decades."

    In other words, the children whose education has taken place mostly since the No Child Left Behind act show the greatest gains, while for those whose education took place mostly under the old system, it was apparently too late to repair the damage.

    Do not expect either the New York Times or the education establishment to draw these conclusions from these data. Nor are black "leaders" likely to pay much attention, since they are preoccupied with such hustles as seeking reparations for slavery.

    "By their fruits ye shall know them" may be an ancient adage, but results take a back seat to dogma when it comes to the education establishment. That is why there has been so little to show for all the additional billions of dollars poured into American education during the past three decades.

    Ironically, there was another report issued recently, this one giving results of opinion polls among professors of education, the people who train our public school teachers. It is also very revealing as to what has been so wrong for so long in our schools.

    for full article:
    http://www.capmag.com/article.asp?ID=4322
     

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