Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Problems cannot be solved by the level of awareness that created them... Albert Einstein

Problems cannot be solved by the level of awareness that created them... Albert Einstein

I was struck this morning by two articles appearing in the Mail Star section of the Herald in Halifax and

about recent testing of 10,000 Grade 3 students in Nova Scotia on fundamental math skills. While the test scores were not published (thankfully) we found out that 33% of the students couldn't achieve a grading of over 67%. This is in light of earlier testing of Grade 12 students who had an average score of 39% in math. I have posted on the issues of education in this province in the past, and the recent testing attests to the complete failure of the education system in Nova Scotia to prepare students for life as adults. Math is a core subject, and one that can lead to personal chaos if not well conceptualized and implemented by adults.

These scores should lead one to a conclusion that the system is failing from the lowest grades, yet the Minister of Education for the province, Karen Casey is quoted as saying "we set high expectations with this assessment and I am pleased t that hat so many students met that standard". Funny, that's not the reaction I expected.

I would strongly recommend all adults (especially us older gaffers) in our province read not only the above links to the paper, but also a report done by GPI Atlantic on 'how well educated we are" in our province ( Ron Colman of GPI states that the "civic literacy of young Canadians has fallen over time"... he added that the percentage of 18 to 23 year olds answering correctly a series of general political knowledge questions was only slightly over 30%. Between the under thirty crowd's lack of math and their lack of civic knowledge it is likely that they will continue to support the status quo in our government and the education system. Grey hairs unite!

I have referred to Einstein's comment on who is capable of solving perplexing problems like the education issues facing Nova Scotia. Clearly, according to this Einstein Theory, not the NSTU and not the Department of Education bureaucrats and not the incumbent leadership (refer to Ms Casey's comment).


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Grad. Saint Mary's University, 1975, got into the medical device business initially in sales, then various management positions up to president, all in Medical Devices. I prefer therapy products over diagnostic, but they are all fun, and in a way have defined my life. I have now evolved, with help from my 35 year partner Lynnda with whom I now share every hour. I am into staying healthy, photography, kayaking, bicycling, gardening and two books a week. I wish I had gotten to this stage earlier!