Updated: Jan 21
The Grand Canyon Between Aims of Education and Practices
I'm utterly fascinated by the extent to which an entire institution can keep their blinders on. I alluded to a similar issue on a smaller scale, in our individual lives and at the site level, when I talked about the temptation we all face of drinking the Kool Aid that convinces us we are already doing whatever theory or practice is set before us so we don't have to do the soul searching work of deconstructing and re-constructing how we think and what we do. I also underlined the resistance that one gets when we start actually doing things differently, even when it's a practice promoted by the hierarchy. The inevitable disequilibrium we feel that comes with change coupled with the social pressure NOT to rock the boat can send us running, not walking, back to our existential home, per Joseph Campbell, and staying there!
Here is a brief overview of the results of an expansive study done by John Goodlad, one of my heroes, in 1994. I'd love to hear your thoughts and responses and if you can, email me or place in the comments your own personal prioritized ranking of the goals that Goodlad collected. I will compile that data so we can all see the results. I know rankings are very frustrating and superficial in many ways, but it'll show some trends and patterns on the types of goals tend to end up at the top and at the bottom. It could be illuminating.