Monday, October 3, 2011

NYT debate on advanced learning

A parent forwarded a New York Times debate, "Are Top Students Getting Short Shrift?" to me. Seems like it might be of interest to many APP parents.

The article points that putting advanced students in the same class with remedial and average students "benefits average and lagging students, but ... at a cost to top students." There are six opinion articles attached to the main article and active discussions in the comments on each of them.


zella917 said...

I read the article and the comments, which I found interesting. It seems like our district is going this direction also with the watering down of Spectrum and splitting of APP. You might want to post this on the SNAPP facebook page too, or make a note there sending interested folks here to this blog.

TraceyS said...

I read these articles earlier as well. What struck me was the language used in the national debates seems to have recently filtered down into our district discussions as well. I did not know how extensive this push towards differentiated classrooms was on a national level.

On a related note: Dina Brulles, one of the two authors of the Cluster Grouping Handbook currently making the rounds, will be speaking at Wedgwood Elementary on Wednesday Oct 26. The model described in the book relies heavily on classroom differentiation, and is presented for situations where self-contained classrooms are not an option (straight from the book, not my words).

She was invited to work with staff during the day, and will lead a parent discussion in the evening on "more background on the cluster grouping model." I do not know if this meeting is open to families outside of Wedgwood, but I will try and publish some notes from the meeting for those who are interested in this.

I know this book was also used as a basis to change the Spectrum delivery model at Lawton, and there has been a lot of criticism that the model, as being implemented at these two schools, varies significantly from the one presented in the book or her research. It will be interesting to hear Dr. Brulles' take on it.

Lori said...

Thanks, TraceyS. I look forward to reading about what you learn at the Wedgwood meeting.

TraceyS said...

The meeting with Dina Brulles has been moved to Nathan Hale, to accommodate more people. Since I have seen notices on the Eckstein and Lawton websites, it is probably safe to assume the meeting is open to anyone who wants to hear her presentation.

Dr. Brulles was hired to train Wedgwood staff on cluster grouping, and she'll lead an evening parent presentation afterwords. In addition to her book and research, she also runs a consulting business.

The meeting is this Wednesday, Oct. 26 at 6:30 at Nathan Hale.

TraceyS said...

There is a good discussion going on about the Dina Brulles presentation over on Save Seattle Schools. Melissa wrote up some very good notes, so I won't repeat them here.