Curriculum & Instruction

According to this comprehensive report, only five states combine solid academic standards with strong school accountability.

Louis Chandler, professor of Educational Psychology at the University of Pittsburgh, determines how widespread progressive and traditional practices are in public, Catholic, and independent schools in the fairly typical state of Ohio. This report the results of his survey of 336 elementary schools that was conducted in the Buckeye State early in 1999.

This book is a guide to ten of today's best-known school designs. It is meant for parents, teachers, school board members, philanthropists, civic leaders and other "consumers" who must evaluate which, if any, of these models they want to pursue.

Tracking and ability grouping strategies differ widely from school to school. They diverge even more widely from their portrayal in the popular criticisms of the 1980s. This report digs into the sensitive matter of whether those criticisms are valid today. The answer tells a more complicated and more honest story than we have heard before on this topic.

Three Fordham staff members analyze trends spotted in academic standards across the disciplines. They found that too many state standards are vague, anti-knowledge, entranced with "relevance," and focused on teaching rather than learning.

In this review of state math standards, authors Raimi and Braden found a disturbing lack of "mathematical reasoning" in most of the 47 state standards they examined; only three states earned "A's" while 16 states flunked.

This review of state science standards is the final in our series of reports analyzing state standards in the five core content areas. For this review, author Lawrence S. Lerner analyzed the science standards of 36 states and found that state science standards are the strongest of the five disciplines we studied. Based on his analysis, six states earned 'A' grades, seven earned 'B's,' and only nine flunked.

The second in a series of evaluations of state standards, this is our first review of state history standards. In his analysis, author David W. Saxe offers a scathing indictment of state history standards, which he judged to be little better than the oft-ridiculed National History Standards; four earned 'A's' or 'B's,' while 19 states flunked.

This is the third in a series of reports on state standards published by the Fordham Foundation and is our first-ever look at state standards for geography. Authors Susan Munroe and Terry Smith found reason for hope in a few of the excellent standards they found (like Colorado's), but most of the documents they analyzed were extremely weak; only six states earned "A's" or "B's," while 18 states failed.

Dr. Sandra Stotsky, the eminent authority on English language education, led off a Fordham series of standards reviews with a detailed critique of the English/Language Arts standards of 28 states. Massachusetts' were found to be the strongest, a beacon for other states to emulate.

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