Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Students Going Further: A Connecting Note

| Post by Susan Perkins Weston |

So far, in this series of posts, I've shared four kinds of thinking behind my confidence that Kentucky students can learn at substantially higher levels than we currently see.

My first post for 2017 offered examples of students already soaring.

The next three have each offered partial explanations of how students can have all that potential and yet that potential does not get realized:
  1. Students do not engage enough big tasks that let them build and show their big capacities.
  2. Teachers do not do enough systematic work analyzing what students produce, identifying instructional implications, and planning next learning steps
  3. Schools are not set up to allow teachers to do the systematic work and sustain the big tasks, with schedules erecting some of the largest barriers.
Here, I want to add that while those posts give three explanations, they don't offer three different prescriptions. The really big idea is that with the right deep shift in time and culture, teachers can engage together in the careful analysis of student work in order to teach important tasks with increasing effectiveness. It's one big strategy, not three smaller ones.

With that strategy, implemented at scale over a sustained period, Kentucky students can work at substantially higher levels than we currently see.

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