I think one thing that is really wrong with academics and education in America is all of the acronyms. CAHSEE, CST, API, AYP, SELPA, ASB, ELD, and on and on. Then, there’s the language. So, I guess, it’s not just the acronyms, exactly, but jargon in general and language that is used to put a barrier between you and the academic. Like, “We are looking to use best practices to deliver quality instruction with credential, highly qualified professionals that will make adequate yearly progress toward core curricular standards for all stakeholders.”
Yeah. That says, “We are going to do a good job teaching with good teachers and the students will be tested to see that they are getting better in things like English and Math based on things that we all agree they should be learning.”
Honestly, is the first way really better? Or, does it just gussy it up so you don’t start to wonder why you’re paying such a high salary to that academic?
I’ve actually seen an academic “educational goal” on a district’s literature that stated that they wanted to “ensure that all learners achieve proficiency in the core curricular standards.” Seriously. In other words, the goal is that the students get good at stuff like English and Math.
Why don’t we just stop messing around? Here’s a goal I want to see. “The students of our school will be encouraged to continually strive to enervate their physical systems such that a continual influx of aerated molecules might enrich and provide successful outcomes in their daily living.”
Translation: We will tell the students to breathe regularly.
I think this is why I have trouble sometimes, because education is not really that complicated. That’s not to say that teaching is easy. It’s hard because it involves a complex mix of psychology, knowledge, personality, and pedagogy. But, you have a skill you want to teach. Check and see how much the kids know about it already. Explain what they don’t know. Show them how to do it. Let them try it. Give them feedback. Let them try it again. Feedback. Test them and give them a grade.
But, I think some people want to justify their salary.