Monday, September 23, 2013

Cause, meet effect

On Stuff this morning:

Scientists are alarmed as a growing number of schools considering ditching science from the compulsory curriculum because it is too difficult for some pupils.

More precisely, "students were struggling to achieve NCEA level 1."

Which is a handy illustration of the following: if, instead of leaving professional educators to get on with educating, you decide that their work must be treated as a business, with the appropriate performance measurements, incentives etc, you will achieve that which you incentivise.  And if what you incentivise is the passing of exams, that cause will result in an effect.


Anonymous said...

...maybe it was a my experience of the state schooling system through three children it should have read '..many teachers would struggle....'


Adolf Fiinkensein said...

You got it in one, Don.

By Milt's reasoning, the world is warming.

The Veteran said...

Nothing of course to suggest that the quality of teaching is any way to blame over this .....

Tui ad material.

Psycho Milt said...

Well, a decline in teaching quality is a possibility. Let's consider the likelihood:

1. For some unexplained reason teacher quality has suffered a decline in recent years.


2. The NZ government has in recent years encouraged parents to regard school quality as a matter of NCEA pass rates and schools are responding accordingly.

As it stands, 1 is short of an explanation as to how and why it might occur, while 2 is entirely plausible. Anyone wanting to make a case for 1, feel free to do so. Don't expect me to make one though, it strikes me as a ridiculous claim.

Paranormal said...

PM - would you accept it could be the NCEA system itself that is flawed and the rot started setting in when that was introduced? You talk of incentives - what does the NCEA system incentivise?