Re: Dbyates on CA Charter Schools

Dale R. Reed (
Sun, 02 Feb 1997 08:50:22 -0800 wrote:
> In a message dated 97-02-01 16:48:30 EST, Marge wrote:
> (In discussing whether or not democratic schools can be charter schools
> because of requirements placed on charter schools:) "Implicit in the notions
> of "outcomes" and "measurements" is testing; testing has to have a basis;
> does this not almost certainly imply a "curriculum"? "
> Not necessarily. The Highland School has been administering standardized
> tests as a condition of their approval to operate as a legal alternative to

On the subject of testing it is a fact of life that humans must learn
how to take written tests. It is not a skill that we are born with and
little children all on their own are not likely to know how important it
will be to their future happiness. I had to take written tests to gain
my ham radio license, another one to get my drivers license, thousands
of them at the University, there are hundreds of testes to become
licensed and certificated into State regulated professions. I don't
like it but new tests are being added faster than they are removed.

Even though one knows the FCC laws backwards and forwards, understands
the effects of the solar wind on the ionosphere hence being able to
better predict which frequency will work best at what time of day and
can send and receive Morse code at amazing speeds, if the prospective
candidate freezes up during testing they cannot legally operate an
Amateur Radio Station.

In the modern world young adults and older ones must demonstrate their
abilities via written tests and I think the skill of taking tests can be
learned best by taking lots of tests with possibly some helpful
advice(teaching) by a accomplished test taker.

Then there is the threat of presently being developed and instituted (in
all or at least most states as far as I can determine) Goals 2000
testing and the Certificates of Mastery and . . . . . I don't even want
to think about it!

I do think the tests will become more realistic in the future actually
determining whether the individual can do the job. I think there will
be a increasing use of virtual reality and maybe even the injection of
drugs to bring the worker up to speed but that is even further into the

Of course how one gains the knowledge can vary. Some tests may be best
dealt with by using a curriculum and some not. Depends.

I am sure that at a SVS school if a student wants the staff to follow a
curriculum the staff would oblige. For example if the majority or even
one student wants an Algebra I class using a Saxon text book I would
expect that is what will happen. I know this has happened in the past
for I have read about it in the SVS literature.

Of course its possible that some of you do not consider a textbook a
curriculum. Maybe I do not know what you are talking about. Wouldn't
be the first time. Dale