For the last 18 months I have found myself desperately wanting to sit down and reflect on the latest science story or something new to the world of the Common Core, but alas my time was much needed as I pursued a degree in educational leadership at Bank Street College. The program provided me with some of the greatest insight into theory and practice in the educational field with some of the best professors I have ever had the pleasure of working with.
The time allowed me to narrow my focus and energies into areas of educational that matter most to me. And while they still may be broad to some, their underlying threads are connect them.
Most importantly, I have turned a lot of my attention to the ways in which our system handles students who have become part of the growing class of over-age/at-risk/holdover’s. Across the country more and more students are finding themselves in the difficult position of repeating a grade and falling behind academically from their peers. To make matters worse, often times these students repeatedly fail a grade leaving them two or three years older than the students with whom they share their classes with. Teaching this particular subset of students often becomes a challenge because of their unique situation. Lets face it, who wants to be 16 in the 6th grade and trying to compete with someone who is 5 years younger than you. School seems pretty useless at that point.
Their situation and the ways in which we as a system become accountable for their success has led me to spend a lot of time also looking at the ever-changing accountability measures that are being put in place across the country for both students and educators alike. As districts, states, and the federal government push for systems and structures for accountability, effectiveness, and progress everyone is feeling the pressure. It is hard to imagine that only a few years ago we thought that those passages on the state tests with narrative non-fiction were a challenge.
As I ease my way back into blogging, my intention is to provide my insight and that of those who are at the educational forefront of these and other important topics facing not only our students but the entire system as well. 🙂 But for now, I am just glad that I finally have the time to be back on my blog and chiming in on those little things that matter most to me as I continue to push myself and my career in my continued quest to always capitalize on those teachable moments. 🙂 – K