Scholastic sent out this list of the decade’s 10 big ideas in education. I thought it was a pretty good list.
(Since this is a list from a children’s publishing, education and media company, the big ideas have a lot to do with reading. )
Take a look and see what you think is missing. An emerging idea that is not on the list is overlapping high school and college by offering more joint enrollment programs and creating new opportunities for kids to get college credits.
1. Alternate Paths to Teaching—from Teach for America to Troops to Teachers to urban Teaching Fellows programs, schools of education are no longer the only place that teachers begin their careers.
2. Transformative Technology— From whiteboards to online education, 1-to-1 computing to eReaders, for the first time in the history of American education, classrooms are increasingly plugged in – and so are the students.
3. Accountability— No matter where you stood in the debate on No Child Left Behind, it’s impossible to deny that this decade marked a new era with a shift toward reporting the results for every child in every school.
4. Data-Driven Instruction—Once we have data on every student, it’s easier to reach them quickly and to teach them better. Data is the new currency of 21st century schools.
5. Charter Schools—While the jury remains out on their effectiveness, there is no doubt that charter schools are incubators of innovation in education and harbingers of parent involvement in schools.
6. The Rise of Digital Content—By 2020, 95 percent of all knowledge will be a search term away—marking a game-changing move from static pages to dynamic, digitized content.
7. A Focus on Adolescent Literacy— With 65 percent of American eighth graders reading below grade level, teaching reading is no longer a job just for elementary school teachers. Our middle and high schools are taking dramatic steps to tackle the job of teaching reading to older, struggling students—ensuring that every child learns to read in an era of global competitiveness.
8. Books Are the New Black — In the decade that gave us “Harry Potter,” “Twilight” and “The DaVinci Code,” the hottest accessory is definitely the book. And it’s impossible to deny the power that a single book can have on children’s feelings about reading. ”
9. It Takes A Village—More than ever, education is reaching beyond the walls of our schools to build strong communities that support learning both in and out-of-school. From the universal pre-K movement and burgeoning after-school programs, to summer reading initiatives and in-school community centers, we’re learning that it takes a combination of home, school and community to prepare kids for their futures.
10. The American Recovery & Reinvestment Act —Although it is the hallmark of only the last year of the decade, with its more than $100 billion dollar investment in America’s schools, ARRA represents an historic moment in American Education. While we cannot predict its impact, we can say with certainty that ARRA will leave an indelible mark on this decade of ideas in education.