ERIC Number: ED380302
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1995
Reference Count: N/A
Rhetoric and Reality of Systemic Reform: A Critique of the Proposed National Science Education Standards.
Cognosos, v4 n1 p1-3,7-8 Win 1995
This article briefly reviews the central ideas associated with the notion of systemic reform and indicates how these ideas are manifested in the draft of the National Science Education Standards. The draft is critiqued and what the critique suggests about the viability and utility of the notion of systemic reform is considered. The discussion identifies problems associated with the implementation of a conceptual distinction between means and ends identified by rhetoric and discusses the use of vagueness to build coalitions of support. The possible implications of an approach that employs predefined content and skills operationalized in statewide assessment systems that meet traditional validity and reliability criteria is examined. The draft document's endorsement of authenticity combined with traditional validity and reliability criteria as a form of assessment is questioned. The report concludes that the National Research Council's "unifying vision" does not provide a foundation for a new form of educational decision making, one in which inevitable trade-offs and difficult choices are confronted and resolved. Furthermore, difficulties are found with the concept of systemic reform itself and that these problems could ultimately lead to failure. Contains 12 references. (LZ)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Journal Articles
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Practitioners; Researchers; Teachers
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: National Center for Science Teaching and Learning, Columbus, OH.