Thursday, December 16, 2021

Total Surrender In California

 Dig this.

Some of California’s largest school districts are trying an unconventional tactic to help students re-engage in school after distance learning and boost their chances of acceptance into the state’s public colleges: by dropping D and F grades.

Los Angeles Unified, Oakland Unified, Sacramento City Unified, San Diego Unified and other districts are phasing out grades below a C for high school students.

They are doing this to fight racism, of course.

Although education reform advocates have been pushing for this for years, the pandemic offered an opportunity for districts to put it into action. With so many students languishing academically after a year of distance learning, districts see dropping D’s and F’s as a way to help students who had been most impacted by the pandemic, especially Black, Latino and low-income students.

Not to worry, the students will still be assessed on their, err, "competence."

But the move is also, potentially, a step toward an entirely different learning system, in which students are assessed by what they’ve learned, not how well they perform on tests on a given day or whether they turn in their homework on time. Known as competency — or mastery-based learning — the style has been a staple of some private and charter schools for years, and a goal for education reformers trying to overhaul the traditional high school system.

No word on how those assessments will be made.

Who is being fooled by this trash? Tests exist to determine mastery and competence. It's what they do. There's no other way to do it because, in the end, every assessment is, by definition, a test. Any other way of describing it is deliberate gibberish. The education industry in California is lying right to our faces and they don't care. They are corrupt and degenerate.

Meanwhile, they still have time to sexually groom the kids.

Don't tell mommy about our LGBT club, OK? It will be our little secret!


tim eisele said...

Yeah, that's a problem. "Assessed by what they learned" - what does that even mean, if it doesn't involve some kind of testing?

Which isn't to say that there aren't horribly designed tests that do a poor job of determining what students have learned. Multiple-choice tests in particular are awful for determining which students have actually learned the material, as opposed to having learned to be good guessers. I've been on the test-making side as well as the test-taking side, and making a multiple choice test that doesn't give away the correct answers to kids who don't really understand the material, but have learned the appropriate guessing strategies, is pretty difficult. Which is why I don't use multiple-choice tests.

But, when you want lots of kids to all take the same test, multiple-choice tests become awfully tempting because grading can be automated, which is a huge cost savings when you need to grade a few thousand test papers.

Mostly Nothing said...

I am so glad I'm not involved in hiring, especially for entry level jobs. It's seems that a High School Diploma is meaningless. And a lot of college diplomas are approaching that. Not MTU, Tim, at least in my first hand knowledge of graduates. :-)

tim eisele said...

Thanks for the vote of confidence, MN. I sometimes wonder just how much of an anomaly Michigan Tech might be. Between the focus on technical subjects, and the fact that we are way out in the boondocks rather than being in or near a city, I can't really tell what might be going on at other universities. And the same with our high school: probably half the kids there have parents that are faculty/staff at Michigan Tech, and those are exactly the parents that you would expect are going to be way more interested in their kids getting a good education than is typical in most of the rest of the country.

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