Comments on: What Testing Does to Our Children Education on the Edge Thu, 14 Nov 2019 06:13:35 +0000 hourly 1 By: Mark Barnes Sat, 20 Dec 2014 14:47:32 +0000 Ken, I know people who have successfully built new schools and others who have tried and failed. I have been invited by several people to help them launch schools built on student-centered, no-grades philosophies. There hasn’t been much follow-through on those fronts.

In my book, Assessment 3.0, I mention Anastasis Academy in Colorado. It is one of the finest examples of the kind of school I think we both envision. I love the idea of being part of a special place like this.

While I applaud people like my friend, Kelly Tenkely, who founded Anastasis Academy, and I would seriously consider a real offer to be part of building a similar school, I struggle with the idea of ending the battle with the “Empire.” I do envision the Empire’s fall and rebirth. I think it will take Star Wars-like rebels to make it happen.

It may be a long battle, but the victory will make the battle worth fighting.
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By: Kenneth Tilton Sat, 20 Dec 2014 12:44:44 +0000 In shaping our strategy, I think it important to realize testing is just one facet of the larger top-down, accountability, pro-charter, anti-teacher, anti-school , refomer (not!) Empire. Hunter Thompson said, “Kill the body and the head will die.” Analogy uncertain.

So how do we stop the Empire? Don’t think about “stopping”. Think about starting a true reform movement. Ignore (kinda–more below) the bogus reform movement and focus positive energy on building something better, as best we can given the unavoidable Empire. Put Kenneth Robinson in charge. Find some other rich people to fund better schools. Undercut the Empire by building something that Actually Works(tm), undercutting the Empire even as it slowly dies of its own weight and failed premises.

For one thing, it would be more fun building a great school than butting heads with the Empire. That has money and inertia and even laws behind it. Anti-Empire sniping should continue to rally public opinion against the Empire, but that and the upcoming CCSS test results and charter school performance results will take two years to kill the beast.

In the meantime we cheer ourselves up by building a few dream schools. “Anti” is depressing, “pro” invigorating.

Is anyone working on this?