August 25, 2013

Maine Voices: Educators really must raise expectations

There's compelling evidence that college students (and parents) are not getting their money's worth.


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We need to provide the clear standards and high expectations for academic achievement and then support the students to be successful in those environments. And to go along with it, we need to provide the daily structure so students create positive work habits that are intrinsically motivated.

Students need to know that the disciplined work habits and study skills they develop now are not only important for the passing grades they receive, but also for their ability to continue to learn and think critically throughout their lives.

And we educators have to take a long look in the mirror. The failure of many young people to take advantage of their school environment and develop their skills in complex problem solving and writing is our failure, too.

As administrators and educators use their summer months to reflect on the previous academic year and plan for a curriculum that will best serve students now and in the future, it is time to develop strategies that will best serve our students.

We need to strengthen our standards for instruction and refocus our time on developing the very skills that Arum and Roksa identified in their study. Only then can we provide students with the quality educational experience that will allow for their long-term success.

Brad Choyt of Yarmouth is head of school for North Yarmouth Academy.


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