The pressure is on at schools across America. In recent years, reforms such as No Child Left Behind have created a new vision of education that emphasizes provable results, uniformity, and greater attention for floundering students. Schools are expected to behave more like businesses and judged almost solely on the bottom line: test scores.
To see if this world is producing better students, Linda Perlstein immersed herself in a suburban Maryland elementary school. The resulting portrait -- detailed, human, and truly thought-provoking -- is marked by the same narrative gifts and expertise that made Not Much Just Chillin' so illuminating.
The school, once deemed a failure, is now held up as an example of reform done right. Perlstein explores the rewards and costs of that transformation, through the experiences of the people who lived it. Nine-year-olds meditate to activate their brains before exams and kindergartners write paragraphs. Teachers attempt to address diverse needs at the same time they are expected to follow daily scripts, and feel compelled to focus on topics that will be tested at the expense of those that won't. The principal attempts to keep it all together, in the face of immense challenges.
Perlstein provides the first detailed view of how new education policies are modified by human realities. Tested will be talked about, thought about, written about -- and will almost certainly play an important role in the national debate as the federal education law come up for renewal.
|Publisher:||Holt, Henry & Company, Inc.|
|File size:||2 MB|
About the Author
Linda Perlstein spent six years covering education for The Washington
Post and is the author of the acclaimed Not Much Just Chillin': The Hidden Lives of Middle Schoolers. She speaks nationwide to educators and parents. She grew up in Milwaukee and now lives with her husband in Baltimore and western Virginia.
Linda Perlstein spent six years covering education for The Washington Post and is the author of the acclaimed Not Much Just Chillin’: The Hidden Lives of Middle Schoolers. She speaks nationwide to educators and parents. She grew up in Milwaukee and now lives with her husband in Baltimore, Maryland, and western Virginia.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This book reveals the perspective of everyone involved in the high-pressure, high-stakes world of standardized testing. The political background is deftly interwoven with the stories of the teachers, students, principal, and other staff. Love this book!
After reading Perlstein's book I was very angry- angry that we are so worried about testing in schools that we fail to realize that are children are not learning. There are so many kids who come from broken homes, substance abuse, neglect and don't even speak English. Ms Perlstein followed Tyler Heights Elementary School while they tried to meet the standards of No Child Left Behind. With new teachers, no funding and a school made up of mostly impoverished children the principal was able to reach her schools standards of learning. This book reminds all of us a teachers, former teachers and parents that what the government and school district wish for does not match the realities of children we have in school. It was a wonderful read.
I picked this book up at the library and thought I'd scan through it. I ended up reading the whole thing in one day. I taught for 11 years and this book covers everything, without(often)taking sides. I thought it was a perfectly written, fast-paced, informative look on the inside that is exactly how it really is in the schools.