ERIC Number: ED249579
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1984-Jun
Reference Count: N/A
Organizing and Delivering Curriculum for Maximum Impact.
Spady, William G.
This paper presents ideas relating to curriculum organization from the Far West Laboratory for Educational Research and Development publication, "Excellence in Our Schools: Making It Happen," which attempted to synthesize nine reports written in response to the National Commission on Excellence in Education report, "A Nation at Risk." It begins by summarizing four general points that are consistent across all nine reports: (1) include higher-order thinking and application skills within the definition of literacy and competence; (2) assure that all students acquire these skills; (3) employ models of instructional delivery that maximize available resources; and (4) evaluate and improve both staff and program effectiveness. The essential components of excellence in schooling, for the purpose of this paper, are drawn from "A Nation at Risk" and include: an instructional system capable of providing the individual learner with an appropriate level of challenge and a realistic opportunity to succeed in meeting clear instructional goals. Three school districts whose instructional programs come close to meeting this ideal excellence are described: Johnson City, NY; Red Bank, NJ; and New Canaan, CT. In each case, instruction is guided by a clearly defined goal, teaching is clearly directed toward that goal, and students are explicitly assessed according to the goal. Finally, academic learning time is cited as a key to school improvement, and it is concluded that raising standards is contingent upon clarity of goals, organization of curriculum, opportunities to learn, quality of instruction, opportunities to demonstrate competence, and staff communication and collaboration. (TE)
Descriptors: Academic Standards, Competency Based Education, Curriculum Development, Educational Improvement, Educational Objectives, Educational Quality, Elementary Secondary Education, Individualized Instruction, Instructional Development, Instructional Improvement, Program Effectiveness, Teacher Effectiveness, Time Management, Time on Task
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Policymakers; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: N/A