Monday, September 12, 2005

Education Hierarchies

I went to a meeting after school today for all AP teachers. We met with 2 uppy-ups in our district. Oh my. The whole meeting they're all, "tell us what you need. tell us what you need." you know, to raise AP exam scores and make the program more successful. Well, the funny thing is that to every suggestion we had, the answer was either, "oh, we can't get that", or "it's coming" (and that has apparently been the answer for 2 - 3 years. Then one of the people had run some statistical analysis on questions they had asked AP students RIGHT after they had taken the exam. On some of the low scores that reflected on our school, I wondered out loud if we could further probe the students why they answered that way, to get a better feel on how to rectify the situation. The statistics man just would not get it. He kept thinking that I was dismissing the questions and trying to justify why the score shouldn't have been low. All I wanted was to further clarify what the problem was. So .... I guess I don't know the upshot of the meeting, and I don't know how helpful the "central office" people were. Hmmmm.

In other funny news. I'm trying to get my precalculus students to memorize (relearn) the special right triangle ratios, so I'm holding a contest and they have to come up to the front of the room and on 2 projected triangles, they are timed on how long it takes them to put down the correct numbers. .... They were a bit "heckle-crazy" the other day, so we talked about manners, and practiced, and then I said, "okay, who wants to come up here and test their mettle?". They thought I was making up words and wouldn't believe me that "mettle" was a word because I'm a math teacher. Google to the rescue. Hmph. Mettle, mettle, mettle. Goofy little kiddies.

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