Friday, December 05, 2008

I learned It From You, Teach

In a news story earlier this week about a one percent (1%) decline in Language Skill scores of students taking Indiana's ISTEP tests, a local school official said, "It's disappointing but not statistically significant."

     No, by golly, a thousand times no, it must be one or the other.  It can't be both.  Either it's a meaningless fluctuation, or it is a trend you are sorry to see.  You cannot have it both ways.

     ...His statement reflects the sort of thinking one might expect a highly trained educator to recognize and avoid -- unless, that is, his language skills are deficient.  H'mm.  I do believe I'm starting to see a connection here, Watson.


alan said...

Is it language skills that are lacking? Or is it the ability to think critically that is missing?

Probably both. They seem to go hand in hand.

Larry said...

If he were to see your criticism, he would just think it is mean-spirited nit-picking. Because what is important is how you 'feel' about it. That's why it can be statisically insignificant and still disappointing.

Anonymous said...

I definitely agree language skills and critical thinking go hand in hand. If you can't articulate an idea, you can't possibly analyze it.