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A few basics every administrator should know and do To make it in our standards-based education system
Do your palms get clammy and does your stomach churn just a bit when you hear the terms standards, assessment and accountability? Go no further; this article is for you. There are a few basic things to know and do in order to get off on the right foot in today's standards-based era. Six steps are offered.
1 Know the standards
No, I don't mean know every word and every grade-level standard. But we have to be sufficiently conversant so that when we are visiting a classroom or participating in a staff meeting we can guide attention in a meaningful way to the appropriate standards.
Content standards -- what students should know and be able to do -- are the first building blocks of a standards-based accountability system. Let's take a short inventory and see if you can identify approximately which grade level the following standards are for:
* Identify right angles in geometric figures or in appropriate objects and determine whether other angles are greater or less than a right angle.
* Write narrative, expository, persuasive and descriptive texts of at least 500 to 700 words in each genre. The writing demonstrates a command of standard American English, and contains formal introductions, supporting evidence and conclusions.
* Analyze the integration of countries into the world economy, and the information, technological and communications revolutions (e.g. television, satellites, computers).
(Answers can be found at the end of this article)
The state standards do not define everything that we may want to teach. Other important curricula may need to be added for a meaningful instructional experience, and in response to local desires. However, we must ensure that every teacher has an opportunity to learn the standards, and is prepared and supported to teach the standards.
The best way to study the standards is in the context of the appropriate curriculum …