This all just sounds silly. So some politicians want to revamp public school standards in Florida. OK. We want those standards to be top-notch so that we can compete with other nations. OK. We’ll leave the details to someone else at some future time. Huh? Excuse me if I don’t get excited about this idea.
TALLAHASSEE – House Speaker Marco Rubio wants your child to beat the future competition in the global marketplace.
He wants to overhaul the state’s K-12 school curriculum standards to make that happen. But deciding to create “World Class Education Standards” for Florida schools is one thing. Deciding what those standards should be is another.
More civics and geography and earlier teaching of foreign languages would factor into new “world-class” standards that a proposal awaiting final House passage would create. But it leaves most of the details to the state Board of Education, experts, educators and others to figure out later.
Experts have faulted Florida’s standards, meanwhile, for offering more jargon than clear direction.
Florida is smart to revamp its standards, said Chester Finn, president of the Thomas B. Fordham Foundation, which last year graded Florida’s system anywhere from C to F, depending on the subject area.
Problem is, he said, a world-class standard may be impossible to define, even for the experts.
“This world-class thing is an honorable, well-intended slogan,” Finn said. “But at the moment, it hasn’t any grounding in reality.”
The bill aims to replace the Sunshine State Standards with a set that are knowledge-based and appeal to higher-level problem-solving skills.
In reality, Gaetz said, the changes would dovetail with curriculum revisions that the state Department of Education has begun.
I understand the desire to teach kids foreign language, but how about dealing in reality here? Fiddling with the standards–especially adding new subjects–isn’t going to propel students to new heights. The schools are bogged down as it is just trying to teach kids English, math and science for the dreaded FCAT. How about finding ways to really help at the classroom level with real money and time?! Sitting up there in Tallahassee dreaming up these schemes isn’t doing anyone any good.