Goal-Free Education?

March 16, 2006  

I recently appeared on a TV show in Los Angeles, “Between with Lines” with Barry Kubrick. I received quite a few emails in response. One that particularly caught my attention was one from a former teacher, Doug. He writes:

“Your book, Goal Free Living precisely addresses the problem with all of the in vogue accountability and testing in education today. I have been a teacher for 38 years and was able to accomplish so much more before the testing, standards and accountability fad that we are now so plagued with in education. In the 1980′s I had over 18 students accepted to Cal Tech. In the 90′s when I was forced to worry about high test scores on the AP exams, no longer could I let students find the subject themselves but instead had to focus on specific goals to enable them to achieve high test scores. In my last year of teaching I taught in a teacher’s dream of a prep school. I chose not to stay more than one year because the poor students were so pressured in the direction of AP exams that we could get nothing done.”

This is a pressing issue, and one that needs to be addressed. The process of setting these performance goals in our educational system is robbing children of true learning.

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One Response to “Goal-Free Education?”

  1. Elizabeth on March 22nd, 2006 10:30 pm

    I feel that this is a sad representation of how our socitey is competing with I am not sure whom to be the best. And anything less is just not good enough. I applaude this teacher for what contributions he did obtain with the poorer students. I am sure there will be those that will always remember his efforts.