Thursday, September 5, 2013
Planet Parata and the National Standards
Planet Parata is a very orderly little planet where everyone knows their place and Parata herself is royalty. The people of Planet Parata are very respectful to those who are royalty because they are born to rule. Rulers just know stuff that no one else can know, no matter what their education or experience the loyal subjects of Planet Parata understand that they will never have the intrinsic ability to know what's right and must always follow the directions of one who does.
The teachers on Planet Parata carry around their own personal copies of the National Standards and spend every free moment memorising every level and every sentence. This is the teachers' bible and they know that without National Standards no child will ever know how successful they are and no parent will know how their child compares with others. No one can understand how education ever functioned before National Standards existed, the very thought is unthinkable.
Literacy and numeracy are the basis for the National Starndards and are the most important subjects that teachers should teach. Rulers know that other subjects have their uses but can be dangerous if they are not controlled, especially science. Numeracy is especially useful when using money, while science can be dangerous because it can be used to stop the growth of money. The wrong kind of scientists will destroy our economy, especially when it involves studying dubious things like biodiversity and water conservation that have no economic purpose.
Data is a powerful word in Planet Parata. Without data it is impossible to know which are the successful schools and which teachers are performing well. Data can be used to make tables and graphs that can clearly show how our education system is performing. Before National Standards it was very hard to know which schools had high standards and which schools had low standards and now it is easy. Using just literacy and numeracy to assess and compare schools makes the process simple. It especially helps when assessments aren't clouded by wishy washy factors like inclusiveness and compassion, the real world does not recognise such concepts and they aren't good for business.
On Planet Parata every classroom has a portrait of Parata herself hanging on the wall. Her smiling face exudes benevolence and appears all knowing, it creates reassurance for all students that a ruler is watching over them and helping their teachers to understand the standards that they need to reach. The students know that achieving the standards will determine their future and the future of their teacher and their school, the standards are everything on Planet Parata. Long live the Standards!