« Preschools Duel Over Best Strategy | Main | Buyer's Remorse About College »

High Schools of the Future

It's encouraging to learn that some states are combining real-world experience with academic innovation ("Reinventing high school," The Christian Science Monitor, May 21).  The strategy is engaging students in what they need to be successful after graduation.

New Hampshire is in the vanguard of this movement. Rather than rely on off-the-shelf standardized tests, Manchester School of Technology High School in New Hampshire uses performance assessment created by teams of teachers with expertise in their field.  Students move along only when they demonstrate learning, rather than rack up seat time. 

The same approach can be applied to English and other non-technical subjects.  For example, students can be required to make a presentation of their work reviewing a movie or a book.  I like the motto: "As fast as you want, as slow as you need."  Depending on their ability and motivation, they feel more in control of their education. 

Today's youth are far more sophisticated than we appreciate.  They're exposed to images on a daily basis that prior generations lacked.  As a result, it's counterproductive to insist on using dated pedagogy. Yet so many high schools persist in doing that and then wonder why their students are disaffected.

Notice: We recently upgraded our comments. (Learn more here.) If you are logged in as a subscriber or registered user and already have a Display Name on edweek.org, you can post comments. If you do not already have a Display Name, please create one here.
Ground Rules for Posting
We encourage lively debate, but please be respectful of others. Profanity and personal attacks are prohibited. By commenting, you are agreeing to abide by our user agreement.
All comments are public.


Most Viewed on Education Week



Recent Comments