Town Square

New teaching system a hit

Original post made on Mar 21, 2012

With the first day of spring drawing near, Craig Goldman says there are signs all around that his school district has been re-energized. And though it is possible that the unseasonably warm weather is helping his mood, the Mountain View Whisman School District's superintendent says his jubilation is due to the success of a new district-wide teaching system called Explicit Direct Instruction.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, March 16, 2012, 12:00 AM


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Posted by Mike Kelly
a resident of another community
on Mar 21, 2012 at 3:08 am


Calling on students randomly to answer questions and a small chalk board to show results... gee I've seen this before.

Lets reinvent the wheel.

"problem isn't new math ... it's the results"

Mike Kelly, Former WSD - Trustee

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Posted by Jill Brown
a resident of another community
on Mar 21, 2012 at 6:11 pm

Mr. Goldman might want to check with more of the staff within the school district. I don't think you would see a lot of excitement, energy or jubilation for the new program, I think he would see tired, and exhausted staff members. With constant interruptions of people walking in and out of the classrooms weekly not to see how the teacher and the class is doing, but someone coming in and using a clipboard with a checklist to make sure the teachers are doing it correctly. I would think it has been very distracting for the students. As far as learning about knowing how to choose non volunteers, you don't need this new program for that.
I'm curious how Mr. Goldman thinks this program has been successful thus far, what does he have to go off of?

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Posted by Steven Nelson
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Apr 12, 2012 at 4:03 pm

Mike and Jill, this is not 'new math' or constant interruptions. (my youngest still goes to these schools). What the district is implementing, and checking for implementation, is a much more consistent version of "direct instruction'" Look at any introductory educational instruction book for Calif. teacher credentials. THIS IS BASIC.
But even basics can be improved. That's why state-of-the-art quality improvement programs, like the FDAs Good Manufacturing Practices, have constant yearly requirements on operator/engineer re-training and testing. There is also plenty of evidence in research studies that show 'randomization' is not a natural teacher (or experimenter!) attribute.
No one at the District (I hope) thinks this is any cure-all. Just normal process improvement.