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No size fits anyone

Posted By: Dick Schutz on August 4, 2008
One mathematics system DOES fit all, irrespective of its application. One English Alphabetic Code DOES fit all, permitting anyone to handle written language the same way they do spoken language, irrespective of dialect.

What is missing is the wherewithal for reliably teaching kids how to handle the mathematics system and the Alphabetic Code and the other linguistic conventions involved in reading. The same logic holds for the acquisition of expertise in other academic domains.

Forty years of failure to "reform" education education should have taught us that trying to change teaching by changing teacher behavior is doomed. You change consequences by changing the "things"--the product/protocols--people use, not by changing the people per se.

Current reading and math instructional product/protocols are constructed to satisfied ideological interest groups and to maximize publisher sales of materials. And "proficiency" is currently defined in terms of arbitrary cut scores on ungrounded tests. Those are fatal flaws, but they are at the top of the EdChain, not the bottom. They're not intractable flaws to remedy. But if they go unrecognized, we'll continue to do the same thing and expect different results. Ben Franklin defined this as "insanity." We don't use that term today, but the point should be clear.
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 No size fits anyone by Dick Schutz on August 4, 2008
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