(image taken from: themotleymonk.blogspot.com)
Why we need to be data informed, not data driven.
My favorite line from this article is that “schools can tend to focus on its institutional self-interest instead of what’s best for the students.” If a school is data driven, often times what is in the best interest of a student is overlooked. In schools that use test scores as a piece of information makes better judgments about teaching and learning. I have witnessed this at my own school. I hate to say it, but we are data driven. Teachers are pressured into increasing scores on standardized tests. Teachers look at the content descriptors for the state test and feverously teach those items. Creativity is a thing of the past. I do not blame this on the administrators. They are merely following the rules set upon them by the government. If your test scores are bad….bad things will happen to you. I have been teaching for 20 years. There was a time when we were not pressured by state testing. We were able to teach using thematic teaching. The students were taught about the world around them. Students enjoyed school. Because of high stakes testing, we have been reduced to rote, item teaching. We would all love to be data informed….not driven. Right now, however, that does not seem to be an option.