"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Thursday, April 17, 2008

DIBELS: The Reading Race to Finish First in Nonsense

Somehow I missed this article last fall in District Administration on the nuts and bolts of DIBELS, the reading assessment now driving the"pedagogy of the absurd" for the majority of America's reading teachers. Here is just a tiny clip:
. . . .Laser says her family's main issue with DIBELS was her son's school's "overreliance" on the test and teaching solely designed to support test success, with the child's "well-being be damned."

Because of her son's results on two DIBELS measures, his teacher suggested he either repeat kindergarten or be held back after first grade, Laser says. Laser thought Ellis would be ahead of his class in math and science because his Portland school had focused on them, but those subjects were not considered. "It was clear to us that DIBELS is double punishment- DIBELS in and of itself and the expectation that kindergartners must enter first grade with a specific and narrow range of reading skills in spite of their other skills and knowledge," Laser declares. . . .

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