Around 2012, something started going wrong in the lives of teens.
In just the five years between 2010 and 2015, the number of U.S. teens who felt useless and joyless – classic symptoms of depression – surged 33 percent in large national surveys. Teen suicide attempts increased 23 percent. Even more troubling, the number of 13- to 18-year-olds who committed suicide jumped 31 percent.
In a new paper published in Clinical Psychological Science, my colleagues and I found that the increases in depression, suicide attempts and suicide appeared among teens from every background – more privileged and less privileged, across all races and ethnicities and in every region of the country. All told, our analysis found that the generation of teens I call “iGen” – those born after 1995 – is much more likely to experience mental health issues than their millennial predecessors.
What happened so that so many more teens, in such a short period of time, would feel depressed, attempt suicide and commit suicide? After scouring several large surveys of teens for clues, I found that all of the possibilities traced back to a major change in teens’ lives: the sudden ascendance of the smartphone.
Source: With teen mental health deteriorating over five years, there’s a likely culprit
A 15-year study of emergency room visits reveals new signs of emotional suffering among the nation’s young women and girls — particularly those in their middle-school years.
Emergency room visits for girls 10 to 14 who inflicted self-pain were relatively stable before 2008 but escalated in the years since, according to new data. It is unclear why the rate of self-injury among younger teens has climbed, though some experts say it could be because of the girls’ access to smartphones and Internet bullying.
Source: More middle-school girls are inflicting self-pain. Experts say it might be because of smartphones – The Washington Post
Freshmen are told on one hand not to worry about college, then given an early version of a college entrance exam three weeks into their first year of high school. ~Chicago Tribune Nov.13, 2017
Like kindergartners pushed to be first graders, high school is the new college.
Source: High School College: High School Hell!
Six years after Gov. Scott Walker gutted the unions in Wisconsin, teacher pay and benefits have fallen and turnover has risen, a report finds. Now the Supreme Court is reviewing a case that could have a similar impact on unions nationwide.
Source: Here’s what happened to teachers after Wisconsin gutted its unions – Nov. 17, 2017
Can you code? Speak a second language? How high is your IQ?
There’s much debate on what students need most to succeed in an increasingly competitive world. The challenges of automation, globalization, and political upheaval leave out the fact that we’re living an age of information overload.
According to CNN’s Fareed Zakaria, the one thing that children will need to learn is “intellectual discipline.” The ability to recall facts (we have Google) and parrot popular arguments (the canon is dead) has become obsolete. Students need to wade through the noise, discern the facts, analyze perspectives, and develop their own expertise.
Source: What’s the most important skill to learn as a student? The discipline to say “no” — Quartz
As a part of my research explorations, I stumbled across a relatively new book published in 2016 about the problems with using value-added measures in teacher evaluations. This book entitled Building a Better Teacher: Understanding Value-Added Models in the Law of Teacher Evaluation is a short and concise read that any administrator who currently encounters the use of value-added data in teacher evaluations should read.
Paige’s argument is rather straightforward. Value-added models have statistical flaws and are highly problematic, and should not be used to make high-stakes decisions about educators. Scholars across the board have made clear that are problems with VAMs, enough problems that they should only be used in research and to cautiously draw conclusions about teaching.
Source: The 21st Century Principal: Building a Better Teacher Through VAMs? Not So Fast According to Mark Paige’s Book