- Age Range: 5 - 17 years
- Grade Level: Kindergarten - 12
- Paperback: 154 pages
- Publisher: Heinemann; 1 edition (March 30, 1999)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0325001588
- ISBN-13: 978-0325001586
- Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 0.4 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 10 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,265,893 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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One Size Fits Few: The Folly of Educational Standards 1st Edition
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“We're lucky to have someone like Susan Ohanian who is willing to take on all the pious nonsense about Standards.”–Alfie Kohn, Author of Punished by Rewards and No Contest
“Ohanian's work is a refreshing call to action. . . . This will hit a responsive note with many school leaders.”–The School Administrator
About the Author
Susan Ohanian is a longtime teacher and free-lance writer whose articles have appeared in periodicals ranging from the Atlantic and Washington Monthly to Phi Delta Kappan and Education Week. Visit www.susanohanian.org for a wealth of information on education issues and to learn more about Susan Ohanian. You'll find commentary, cartoons, letters, resources, quotes and a word of the day offering children a provocative way to increase their vocabulary. Her email address is: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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The whole idea of "high standards for all" is the classic "if it's too good to be true, it probably is". How can one standard be good enough for every job from mopping the floors up to designing ultrasound machine software?
In a different way, this book stands up for truly traditional education, which never held up _all_ student to one high standard. Thank you for writing this, this is the first volley that will eventually spell doom for the misguided standards based reform movement.
Arthur Hu Candidate Superintendent of Instruction WA 2000
Throughout the book, the author makes numerous cases against the use of educational standards. At the heart of these multifarious denouncements is the recurring theme that standards are dehumanizing. At one point she reminds us of some essential life skills that are usually ignored when standards are created: "The great words of teaching are the one syllable ones: read, write, teach, learn, work, skill, care, help, hope, trust, faith, love. And the greatest of these, of course, is love." (p.127)
Although the author is not in favor of senseless educational standards, we can infer that in order for successful learning to take place, we must answer to some "higher" "standards," those which recur universally within the context of being a good human being. As a long time educator, those are the standards I must strive to have my students attain.
The book is outstandingly well written and thought provoking. Its 7 chapters are divided among 3 sections. The chapters include Ohanian's observations and views, recounted in the form of anecdotes; each under its own title. The language is simple and down to earth. One can start reading this book from any page and still gain wit, wisdom, and fact.
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