A research team led by Marc S. Tucker, a relentless advocate for adopting successful international practices in U.S. schools, recently concluded that we, in essence, are doing almost nothing right.
His investigators could find no evidence, Tucker said, “that any country that leads the world’s education performance league tables has gotten there by implementing any of the major agenda items that dominate the education reform agenda in the United States, with the exception of the Common Core State Standards.”
Congratulations, I guess, go to the 45 states implementing that new common curriculum.Other American approaches, such as charter schools, vouchers, computer-oriented entrepreneurs and rating teachers by the test scores of their students, are rarely found in the overseas systems showing the greatest gains, according to Tucker’s new book “Surpassing Shanghai: An Agenda for American Education Built on the World’s Leading Systems.”
On Monday, I listed several false assumptions Tucker, president of the National Center on Education and the Economy, says have caused us to go astray. They include our view that our mediocre scores on international tests are the result of too many diverse students, that more money would help schools improve and that it is better to focus on lowering class sizes than raising teacher salaries.