by James L. Lewis, Robert K. Ream, Kathleen M. Bocian, Richard A. Cardullo, Kimberly A. Hammond & Lisa A. Fast
We document that caring elementary school teachers spark Hispanic student self-perception of math ability, which in turn increases Hispanic student performance on the California Standards Test for Mathematics. Caring especially impacts math performance among Spanish-dominant English learners, who constitute the fastest growing segment of California’s K–12 student population.
by Stuart Rojstaczer & Christopher Healy
College grades can influence a student’s graduation prospects, academic motivation, postgraduate job choice, professional and graduate school selection, and access to loans and scholarships. Despite the importance of grades, national trends in grading practices have not been examined in over a decade, and there has been a limited effort to examine the historical evolution of college grading. This article looks at the evolution of grading over time and space at American colleges and universities over the last 70 years. The data provide a means to examine how instructors’ assessments of excellence, mediocrity, and failure have changed in higher education.
This week, Professor Clarin Collins discusses her co-authored paper, Putting Growth and Value-Added Models on the Map: A National Overview. Watch and discuss this episode of The Voice on Vialogues.
by Ronald Gallimore & James Hiebert
Implementation is a challenging phase of education reform. In many locales, the rush is on to quickly implement the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). In some districts, textbooks and curriculum materials were delivered only days before school began. Many offered only minimal professional development to help teachers understand what kind of student learning the new standards aim for, and to develop new forms of instruction to support that learning. Despite these circumstances, teachers were still expected to teach the CCSS, and get students ready for new, more demanding assessments coming soon. In too many cases, there is little appreciation that the final, decisive implementation step is teachers planning, trying out, and revising new lessons. Week by week, in small incremental steps, change comes. Often progress is uneven, slower than anticipated, and runs afoul of “hurry-up” pressures that kill reforms before they are ever fully implemented. Evidence is mounting that incremental improvement is the best way to get lasting results –– in medicine, teaching, and industry. Even with robust support for incremental progress, it will take years of collaboration by teachers and administrators for the full benefits of CCSS to be realized. Red flags are up.
by Gary Natriello
The editors of the Teachers College Record are pleased to announce the Annual Yearbooks for 2014.