Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Manifesto: Students! Parents! Participating in Decisions!

Monday’s post on Rick StigginsAssessment Manifesto introduced assessment for learning. Tuesday’s explained that different kinds of assessment, on different timetables, are need for classroom, school , and accountability decisions. Today, an added classroom point.

When Stiggins lays out the classroom level of assessment use, and the decisions about “what comes next in the learning,” he says the decisions are to be made by “students, teachers, and sometimes parents” (page 3).

That's a powerful, pretty radical idea. Children and teenagers bring better energy to projects they understand and support. Parents do too, and parents make a mighty difference in what their kids can accomplish. It’s about empowerment, and about respect.

Stiggins also calls for standards and related curriculum maps to be written so that students and parents can understand and use them as part of their decision-making role.

As I said in the first post, there’s a sunlit vision of confident, excellent classroom work at the heart of this whole project.

Manifesto Point 3: Assessment for learning engages students and sometimes parents, as well as teachers, in key decisions.

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