First of all, thank your for your contributions to the previous posting. Your comments were concise yet indicative of good discussions among your team members. If you have not done so already, I would encourage you to read other groups' comments before beginning the next chapter. I look forward to even more in-depth and insightful commentary on Whatever It Takes as the year progresses. Keep an open mind as we continue reading and discussing these issues and ideas. Nothing ever changed by staying the same.
The following questions should be used as a starting point for your discussions over chapter one. You and your group may elect to simply answer the questions as they are posed, or you can put your responses in paragraph/essay form. Do what works for you, and enjoy the process!
1. Do you agree with the assertion in this chapter that “contemporary public
schools in the United States are now being called upon to achieve a
standard that goes far beyond the goals of any previous generation—high
levels of learning for all students?” If this represents a new goal, what
were the goals of schooling in the past?
2. This chapter introduces three critical questions the authors maintain
schools must consider if they are to fulfill their stated mission of “high
levels of learning for all.” Do you agree with that assertion? Do you feel
any of the questions are not “critical,” and that a school could help all
students learn at high levels without the collective consideration of that
question? Are there other questions you feel should be added to the list?
3. This chapter introduces the topic of formative versus summative
assessments—a topic that will be referenced repeatedly throughout the
book. What is the distinction between the two?