School change: why aren’t we helping kids become remarkable rather than clones

by Steve Wyckoff on March 30, 2010

I’m always looking to capture the essence of real school change and a way to communicate the significance and importance of change. Recently I was reminded of one of my favorite authors, Seth Godin, and the word that he often uses. Remarkable. And I started thinking, what we really need to do is to help our kids discover for themselves what they have the drive to become remarkable at.

While I was pondering this question at my desk I was approached by a superintendent who stopped by to tell me a story. He recently picked up his grandson at school. Upon entering the car his grandson proudly proclaimed what his test scores were on a standardized test. He told me that his heart sunk to his stomach. Even before he could tell me that I groaned in disbelief.

Is this what our school system is becoming? Compare the two above thoughts and think of your own children or grandchildren. Which would you prefer? Would you prefer that they discover a passion and drive that sets the foundation for their life. Or, would you like to have them reach the standard of excellence on a standardized test?

No-brainer! I am disturbed and disgusted where we’re heading in public education. When we talked about school change I never dreamed that our focus would be on raising a standardized test scores rather than preparing our kids for their future in the world in which they are going to live. – Steve Wyckoff

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