Silly Stanford

Posted on June 1, 2013


… Welp, I was not a finalist of the 225 entries for the d.fellowship school.   I hope it’s ’cause I failed to communicate that the   utter brilliance of myself and my ideas  were the more worthwhile than the other 224 (either because the communication failed or because it wasn’t true ;)) … and not that Stanford is like so many other “Let’s Innovate Education” endeavors that *say* they want to be inclusive and not filter out the brightest and most privileged to get ’em to the highest achievement, and do generally send a few tentacles down towards the common folk… but When It Comes Down To It, “oh, well, we know we’re not going to reach everybody,” and the “everybody” are the same folks every time.

THere was less of that at the ECS convening than I had feared, but it was still present.   We’ll be re-designing our “Transitions” math so I went to the session on how Colorado re-designed its developmental ed program.   There was verbal mention of the idea that we should avoid things that were “tracking” in disguise but… um… part of their proposal is to basically counsel folks who don’t do well enough on that math test towards a “non-STEM” career.  Okay, schmokay, they *are* in college after all, and it’s a really, really long steep climb and probably a brain re-wiring — **and** good grief most people who don’t do well on teh math tests don’t want a STEM career.

I don’t like that nobody seems to have a problem with that — don’t at least question whether or not more folks should be able to make either choice because they’re better prepared.

Colorado also spoke of its “soft landing” for people who scored too poorly  to get into the financial-aid eligible level of courses.  They’ would have low or no cost resources to help people buidl those skills, and I *swear* she mentioned math software.  HOwever, when asked, she said that the “soft landing” only applied to reading and writing.

So, if you score ineligible for the “financial aid eligible” level math course, you Just Don’t Have Any Options.

Pretty much all the other options also mentioned that their amazing and innovative programs … well, they weren’t meant for the lower scorers.  It was duly noted that because of inequalitites in our educational opportunities, that many fully capable learners might score in that area and oh, yea, they might usually be People of Color.   (A person of color *did* arrive at the convening Friday morning, held up by weather.  The rest of usat least looked Pure White Bread; our “keynote speaker’ Debra Santiago was Latino but even accent-wise could easily “pass,” thank you.

But that’s enough grumpiness from this person who got stranded by American Airlines in Dallas Fort-Worth and is sitting a day late up in the Chicago Airport (where at least I have INternet for some reaosn, unlike the folks around me… is my computer smart enough to k now I have an att wireless account?)   Debra’s talk was actually deserving of a blog of its own….

Posted in: math, Uncategorized