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ERIC Number: EJ795292
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004
Pages: 11
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 13
ISSN: ISSN-0737-5328
Teaching with Vision: How One Teacher Negotiates the Tension between High Ideals and Standardized Testing
Hammerness, Karen
Teacher Education Quarterly, v31 n4 p33-43 Fall 2004
These are challenging times for teachers. Mixed messages, conflicting demands, and increasing needs on all fronts surround them. Each day, teachers face increasing requirements and significant pressures on their daily practice from administrators and policymakers. It is hard to be, or remain, a teacher of quality committed to one's ideals. In this article, based upon data from interviews and observations drawn from a larger study, the author explores the experiences of one teacher as she attempts to be true to her own passions about what works for students in this era of accountability. The author focuses upon the experiences of a high school science teacher, whom she calls Kelly, as she moves across the country from a large public high school in California to a small public alternative school in Massachusetts--a school she chose specifically because she felt it would be more consistent with her own vision of good teaching. However, while she moved to a school that seemed to her in many ways to be an ideal context, her new school was in a very different "state," a state for which she was not fully prepared. The Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS) a new system of school accountability was in the process of being developed in response to the Massachusetts Education Reform Act of 1993. The MCAS tests were to be piloted in Kelly's district for several years, and then would be required for students from the graduating class of 2003. How this new context affects her teaching, how she feels about her teaching, her students and her school, and what role her vision plays in that process is at the heart of this case. Kelly's struggles, successes, and steady work to maintain her ideals reveal not only the complexity of one teacher's experiences in this era of accountability, but it also illuminates some of the ways that vision might be developed, nurtured, and sustained in novice teachers. (Contains 3 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: High Schools
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California; Massachusetts
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System