Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Our trip...

Just in case you are wondering... here is the continental part of our trip to Alaska.

Click for an interactive link.

Let me know if you are on our route.

School of the Future's first casualty...

How did I miss this from the Philadephia Inquirer?

Also in line for new leadership will be the district's flagship High School of the Future, which saw the surprise resignation of its principal. Shirley Grover, hired by the district in 2005, left for personal reasons this month, officials said.
There was also a single update to the School of the Future blog.

So where are we? Well, no matter where we go I get asked the same question. I find it very indicative of where we are as a country in our analysis of education… “What are the test scores showing” Well… while the learners will be responsible for taking the PSAA’s in their 3rd year, they are not taking the 6 week bench mark tests. So, from an assessment perspective? Each learner has a 17 page OneNote Assessment Portfolio. It documents and measures their work and competencies against a rubric. (Below)
Pretty convenient to not have to worry about benchmark tests. You can click over to read their whole child rubric if you want.

Perhaps the most interesting this is the way Mary Cullinane goes off about the system.
So what have been the biggest challenges?
Well… the system. And I’m sure this comes as no surprise. And I don’t want to suggest that people have not been supportive. They have. However the system prevents them from going to the edge. The system prevents us from being creative. The system supports the status quo, not innovation. The system gets in our way. The system is frustrating.(sic)
Hopefully she isn't complaining about the part of the system that insists the students learn how to read, write, and perform math without relying on computers.

For some real entertainment, read a commenter's rant about the "others."
And then there were The Others. I won't dwell on them, but I'm sure you have a pretty good idea of what and whom I'm talking about. And I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that you had to deal with them while all of this was coming to fruition. I'll bet you could write an entire book just about these people, and your dealings with them. In a perfect world, people such as these would be relegated to the dustbin. But in our real world, this does not necessarily happen. Pity.

No matter what the project, whether in Philly, Boston, or Timbuktu - there are always The Others. And there will always be The Others. They are a given in this world. These are the people who withhold their cooperation for various stupid reasons. These are the naysayers - but you know this because you've experienced it all first-hand, though you may be too diplomatic and too nice to admit it.
It's like a conspiracy theory. Pretty dramatic stuff.

Also see this video news report on the SOF. Make sure you view the end where a professor from Temple University questions the practicality of the SOF.