Monday, 21 May 2012

Year-Round Education


Here comes the same-old same-old again: kids need continuous instruction lest they ‘lose’ what they’ve learned so far, over the 9 week summer break.

British Columbia has recently moved to allow schools to step out of the traditional 180 days between September and June model that we all grew up on and think of as ‘normal’.

There is going to be fallout. It is not going to be pretty.

And, from Ontario, appears this study from which comes this hilarious quote:

However, the Second Career students achieved significantly higher grades than any of the others. The Second Career program was designed by the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities to provide laid off workers with skills training to assist them in finding employment in high demand occupations. Individual received government grants to support them in their studies. Since most members of this group have probably been out of school for some time, this is a result of particular interest. It should certainly stimulate further deliberation over the factors that affect achievement in college mathematics most significantly.

Where oh where is my sarcasm font? Hmm… this one looks good: The longer students are out of school, the better they perform in math?! Could it be that living and working in the real world is better for learning real math skills than learning from teachers in schools? Get away!

Now, what are the Educating Eyeores (thank you, Benjamin Hoff, and The Te of Piglet!!) going to do with this? The EEs say ‘ooh, it’s not working –start it earlier!’ ‘Oh, no, it’s not working –do it longer!’ ‘Eeek, it’s not working –try it harder!’

Which part of ‘it’s not working’ is failing to get through?

I’m not as darkly cynical (if you can imagine!) as some of my friends. One of them claims the reason it doesn’t matter that the entire school system has been a proven failure for decades, because it’s primary mandate is a total success: jobs for adults.

A young adult I know claims it’s worse than that: free babysitting.

Well, at least it will be year-round babysitting jobs for adults.

1 comment:

  1. *sigh* I emailed the article to Michelle, though. I thought she might be encouraged by those math results. ;)

    I went back to university after fifteen years of being out of school. To say that I did well would be an understatement. Guess being brilliantly intelligent doesn't wear off.