It’s Pathological — The Denial Of Fallibility By Educators
There are yet to be published, articles and books on this topic — Educator Pathology: The Denial Of Fallibility By Educators.
There used to be an excellent program to try to bring schools into standard proven practice — The Effective Schools Movement. Read about Ron Edmonds and Effective Schools in Wikipedia. This article lists 6 criteria, but I was involved at this time and a more expanded checklist emerged with a key #8 (Avoidance of Pitfalls) that Edmonds himself declared was essential. See: http://www.parentsteachingparents.net/2015/12/what-happened-to-effective-schools-checklist/
The checklist was effectively killed over time, and that’s a long story. Its revival is overdue.
Now, to amplify on educator defensiveness. In 1953 Professor Hilda Neatby’s book — “So Little for the Mind” — engendered a country-wide (Canada) debate. Public and press received the book with enthusiasm, but educational leaders led a chorus of attacks. Neatby expressed disappointment, “. . . [they failed] to examine and to answer my arguments . . .” and instead attacked her “scholarship”, her “style”, and her “personality”. http://scaa.usask.ca/gallery/uofs_events/articles/1953.php
Roll forward 50 years when Jeanne Chall advocated for phonics in teaching reading. This is what Marilyn Jager Adams wrote:
“ . . . reviewing the research on phonics, Chall told me that if I wrote the truth, I would lose old friends and make new enemies. She warned me that I would never again be fully accepted by my academic colleagues . . . Sadly, however, as the evidence in favor of systematic, explicit phonics instruction for beginners increased, so too did the vehemence and nastiness of the backlash. The goal became one of discrediting not just the research, but the integrity and character of those who had conducted it. Chall was treated most shabbily . . . “
There is UNFINISHED BUSINESS folks! Children are harmed, society is harmed. AND, and the education establishment, especially teachers who ignore good research, are duped by false, ideological worldviews. Constructivism is currently at play. What needs to happen is not imposed reform so much as an IMPLOSION. The system needs to be seen, and to see, how its self-serving priorities are harming the education cause.
For characteristics of teachers in denial see http://www.parentsteachingparents.net/2015/10/discontented-teachers-easy-targets-for-fads/
Yup, it’s the dogged avoidance of accountability that’s at the bottom of most of our education problems. Other professions have standard operating procedures; some have checklists, notably aviation and medical fields. But, educators somehow feel they can do no wrong; they are infallible; there are no casualties from their practice. Please read the delightful, captivating book by Atul Gawande, The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right. 894 Reviews. Really easy read.
BIG TIP: I got the urge to read this book from lurking in young teacher’s blogs. They are excited about this idea and this book. But, they largely remain progressives and constructivists; their checklists will be edu-babble to those who want basic skills and knowledge in schools. Better get in on the ground floor of this movement, when and if it comes to your community. Or better yet, start the ball rolling on checklists for effective schools.