Posts Tagged ‘school reform’

Evidently the two pending charter school applications in Montgomery County are being denied.

My laugh out loud favorite quote from Jerry Weast’s memo:

Panelists raised a number of concerns about the GGPCS applicant. In particular, there were significant concerns raised regarding the academic design proposed by the GGPCS applicants, including several foundational philosophical concerns. First, the philosophical pretext of the GGPCS flow, which is emphasized as an overriding goal of the program, may be difficult to execute well. Flow is described as “a state of great absorption, engagement, competence and fulfillment.” The concept of flow is difficult for individuals to achieve or maintain on a regular basis, according to Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, the author of the best-selling book, Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience. Applying flow to education may be even more difficult to achieve. The concept of school as “fun” pervades the application. However, learning theorists and practitioners repeatedly discount the concept of learning as fun, stating that learning happens when individuals are mildly frustrated by an intriguing problem they are solving or by a complex set of skills they are trying to master. Pleasure, to be sure, may be found in hard work; sometimes this is joyful or fun, sometimes the pleasure derives from having mastered something difficult, from accomplishment. MCPS is committed to engagement as a strategy for increasing student achievement; however, engagement can look like “fun,” or it can look like effort, concentration, and puzzlement. Panelists raised concerns that the application implies that MCPS does not “cultivate each child’s natural curiosity through a vigorous curriculum that emphasizes inquiry, discovery, and authenticity,” and they questioned that assumption.


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