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Test Scores Falling? Change the Test!

The Star Tribune ponders the fact that Minnesota students' math scores keep dropping: "As test scores drop, Minnesota educators seek a 'new conversation' about math." I think "new conversation" means they want to change the subject away from falling test scores. Math scores on the biggest statewide exam have plummeted for six straight years, troubling some education officials and teachers — and prompting deep discussions about how to teach math in a more holistic way. Why, exactly, do falling scores suggest a need to teach more "holistically"? Math is an objective field. Either the student comes up with the right answer, or...

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It’s All Chinese to Me (In a Good Way)

For how long have Americans tried to get education right?  From before Horace Mann was a sparkle in his proud parents’ eyes, more than 200 years ago.  At the heart of that pursuit has been a focus on the ways in which schools have come up short rather than drawing on how they’ve stood tall and done well. But about 40 years ago, there emerged a new school of thought in determining what makes for great schools.  Instead of dwelling on ways in which they fail, which wasn’t leading to nearly enough progress, especially for low-income children, the new idea was...

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Big Lake High School students learn there is no one path to success

Big Lake Schools 3rd Annual Youth Apprenticeship and Career Fair exposed over 1,400 students in grades 5, 8 and 9-12 to career possibilities that do not require the traditional four-year degree. Held on September 20, the event hosted 38 partners ranging from local manufacturing businesses to health care companies to branches of the U.S. Military....

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