Flunking My Son’s Report Card

My son, Sean, got his report card last week, oops sorry his “Student Assessment.” I think he did well. I am not 100 percent sure, because with all the education jargon it is difficult to really tell.

In fact, in order to decipher the gobbledygook (as my friend Michelle Golden calls it) I was sent an email from his teacher explaining it. Here is the email in part. I say in part because each of these required a full paragraph to explain the details.

  1. The Report Card- The specific skills addressed and assessed this grading period are listed with your students achievement.
  2. The First Grade Report Card Addendum- Indicates your student’s Independent reading level at this time.
  3. Student Success initiative (SSI) letter- this will inform you of how your student is performing compared to the grade level standard. 
  4. Math Inventory form- this form reports your student’s scores on the District Math Assessment given to all first graders.
  5. DRA Report- This is your child’s independent reading level.
  6. TPRI Report- This report has their beginning of the  year (boy) testing and middle of year (moy) testing for this assessment.

Now, while I am very grateful to his teacher for her assistance with this, I am dumbstruck with the amount of bureaucracy this must create. Each of these is assessed on a quarterly basis!

Notice the duplication of the second and fifth items. Actually, it is triplication because the first item covers reading as well.

If you want to know why the education budget is completely bonkers look no further. Think about the cost of driving all this crap through the system!

Please note, I believe my son is getting an excellent education so far, but I must say it is in spite of, not because of, all this nonsensical garbage with which teachers must concern themselves.

On the grading system I recall using, I give this an F!

4 thoughts on “Flunking My Son’s Report Card

  1. Ed: Have you ever worked with a company whose management was SO focused on convoluted metrics that it seemed more effort was spent on gathering them than on actually executing? Voila.
    The worst, of course, is when all that effort goes to collecting data that doesn’t even reflect the mission of the organizations. (This applies directly to education, as the lack of consistent vision is stunning, with some parties believing that schools are a factory for future techno-slaves, while others believe that no child should ever face a detail.)

  2. Hey Ed, after 6 years of this gobbledygook, and the next “new system” they were about to roll out, we just gave up and put the kids in Montessori schools. ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Montessori_education ) . If you’ve never explored the approach, its worth it because it is based on the child’s ability and natural development. My 7th grader, who hated school in 6th grade, now enjoys it and goes without fail and my 4 year old is already at a level we didn’t see her brothers hit until late 1st grade (when it comes to math).

  3. So true, Dan. As I mentioned, so far, Sean is getting a great education in spite of this nonsense. Suffice to say, we are keeping a close eye out.

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