Time to change report cards

Paper report cards could become a thing of the past and the teachers’ job action is showing us how.

Paper report cards could become a thing of the past and the teachers’ job action is showing us how.

While many people still cling to the idea of children bringing home a piece of paper with grades and comments at the end of term, it may be time to take another look at this standardized approach.

For generations, the industrial-style education system has been fixated on producing graduates like widgets and report cards have mirrored this model with an overly simplistic analysis of students’ strengths and weaknesses. Admittedly, report cards have been upgraded over the years, with more comments and a reduced emphasis on grades at the primary level, but overall, they haven’t changed much.

What educators now know — and B.C.’s new personalized learning agenda aims to address, at least in principle — is that students have different learning styles and require assessments that are measurable, flexible, adaptable and motivating. Students need a plan that more closely reflects their learning styles, interests and goals instead of a standardized set of outcomes and report cards to match.

So far, the province has done a poor job in defining personalized learning and conveying exactly what and how it will change B.C.’s education system — and under the current model of labour relations in education, it’s hard to know how this will be achieved.

Still, the teachers’ contract dispute has shown there are many ways to assess and report on student learning. Liberated from many administrative duties, teachers are communicating with parents and students by email and telephone, posting information online, sending home records of individual assignments and outlining specific problems that need to be addressed.

What’s more, parents are being encouraged to seek out information about their child’s learning. There may be some gaps if parents don’t know how or are unable to communicate with their child’s teacher. In this event, it would have to be up to teachers to reach out.

There will always be a need for some standardized assessment and recording, especially for those headed for university, but a piece of paper at the end of term is not now and never has been a fully meaningful record of success for all students.

The Tri-City News

 

Just Posted

Rita Dozlaw and Dana Ramstedt win 2019 Dr. Robert and Elma Schemenauer Awards

Rita Dozlaw of Kamloops, and Dana Ramstedt of Pritchard received the 2019… Continue reading

Work-A-Way ladies learn Pickleball in Barriere

By Judith Klontz Laura Finitzer and Sarah Brandt, both from Hamburg, Germany… Continue reading

The 4-H Pledge will now include “…and my world” at the end.

4-H Canada have announced that following their Annual General Meeting on July… Continue reading

Ranch Musings: Rebuilding ranching culture

On the weekend past, we did our spring processing of cattle. It… Continue reading

Canfor looking at possible repurposing of Vavenby sawmill site

At a meeting earlier this month there was speculation on the fate… Continue reading

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

Recall: Certain Pacific oysters may pose threat of paralytic shellfish poisoning

Consumers urged to either return affected packages or throw them out

How a Kamloops-born man helped put us on the moon

Jim Chamberlin did troubleshooting for the Apollo program, which led to its success

Sexual harassment complaints soaring amid ‘frat boy culture’ in Canada’s airline industry

‘It’s a #MeToo dumpster fire…and it’s exhausting for survivors’

How much do you know about the moon?

To mark the 50th anniversary of the first lunar landing, see how well you know space

Body, burning truck found near northern B.C. town

RCMP unsure if the two separate discoveries are related

Couple found dead along northern B.C. highway in double homicide

Woman from the U.S. and man from Australia found dead near Liard Hot Springs

UPDATE: West Kelowna fawn euthanized, not claimed by sanctuary

Gilbert the deer has been euthanized after a suitable home was not found in time

BC Wildfire Service warns wet weather no reason to be complacent

Fire risk currently low for much of B.C. compared to same time over last two years.

Most Read