Reblogged from the becoming radical by P. L. Thomas, Furman University
No, it’s all nonsense, believe me. I had no idea how much nonsense it was, but nonsense it all is.
Anna Scott, Notting Hill
Everything that is wrong with edujournalism and the teaching of writing in the accountability era can be found in Education Week: the anemic examination of the five-paragraph essay (or when edujournalists discover a field in the same way Columbus discovered America) and Lucy Calkin’s interview about the state of teaching writing (or when edugurus package and promote educommerce).
Both of these pieces frame how the teaching of writing now faces greater demands from (you guessed it) the Common Core. But neither piece admits that the Common Core is at best on life support or that this puts the cart before the horse.
You see, the teaching of writing should be driven by the field of composition—the decades of expertise that can be found in the scholarship of writers and teachers of writing as well as foundational and powerful organizations such as the National Writing Project and the National Council of Teachers of English.
The Common Core is no more than bureaucratic nonsense; these standards serve the needs of educommerce, but do not reflect the field of literacy, do not meet the needs of teachers or students.
And thus, these standards, the high-stakes tests inevitably linked to all standards, and the coverage of writing in EdWeek, as Anna Scott opined, it’s all nonsense.