Hi there tout la gang,

We don't have much to say about research in practice at the Café right now

but we are talking policy and practice over here now: Literacy Enquirers.

Thursday, September 27, 2007


Here is a whole bushel of apples for this teacher.

On Tuesday, September 25, 2007, teachers from across the province will rally at the Sooke Board of Education [British Columbia] office in support of a colleague who may be disciplined for refusing to administer a standardized test to her Grade 3 students.

Motivated by concern for her students, Kathryn Sihota, a Grade 3 teacher in the Sooke school district and 27-year veteran in primary teaching, took a stand last spring and refused to give the DART (District Assessment of Reading Team) to her young charges. "I've administered the test for years and I'm not going to do it anymore," Sihota says. "The last time I gave the test, a child dissolved in tears from anxiety. I'd put her in a situation I didn't want her to be in.

Teachers oppose testing when its purpose is simply to satisfy the government and school district agenda of data collection for political purposes, rather than to assist them in finding ways to enrich students' learning experiences. An increasing number of tests are now being imposed on students and are detracting from a quality learning experience.

"Teachers work with students in classrooms every day and understand that students need support and encouragement to be successful," says Irene Lanzinger, president of the British Columbia Teachers' Federation. "We use a variety of assessment methods, including tests, to help students learn. The over-emphasis on standardized exams and data collection is putting students and their success at risk while doing nothing to enhance learning. Teachers throughout the province are speaking out on behalf of their students and the support they need in order to be successful."
September 24, 2007
The breezes taste
Of apple peel.
The air is full
Of smells to feel-
Ripe fruit, old footballs,
Burning brush,
New books, erasers,
Chalk, and such.
The bee, his hive,
Well-honeyed hum,
And Mother cuts
Like plates washed clean
With suds, the days
Are polished with
A morning haze.

by John Updike

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That is some courageous teacher!

And thanks for the poem, it is so descriptive of September. What a great way to start the day!

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