By Ronald J. Newell

Because the Sixties, efforts to reform education_including a number of curricular adjustments, interpreting methods, instructor guidance, cash for the deprived, and diverse educational approaches_have did not lead to precise systemic swap as the reforms fail to accommodate a unique definition of studying. Assessing What rather issues in colleges provides desire to cutting edge and revolutionary faculties, to new and diversified responsibility structures, whereas altering the dialog from an success discourse to a human improvement discourse.

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We know this to be true: we have seen evidence of hope grow within students in progressive schools and yet remain static or even decline in traditional high school settings. As small learning communities develop (replacing large comprehensive high schools), opportunities for students to assume meaningful responsibility for their own growth become more attainable. We know that students have to be taught how to be responsible for their minds, characters, and selves. But we also know that it does not come simply through taking and passing academic subject-matter courses or by passing state tests or college entrance exams.

Once a goal is reached, a more aggressive goal is set, and the process continues. This gradual accumulation of positive experiences in personally meaningful domains is the key to growing hope. To us, the description of the Hope Therapy program sounded very much like the learning model in more progressive, project-oriented schools, so we were not only intrigued by the idea of measuring student hope but also believed that such schools would have the ability to increase student hope over time. 34 Chapter 3 Psychological theory tells us that the satisfaction of the need for autonomy, belongingness, and competence in school leads to higher levels of engagement, which in turn stimulates both academic achievement and growth in hope.

And of course you can say that these things are truly important only if you formally assess them, and traditional schools generally do not. Back-to-basics education and more challenging curricula are too limiting when considering development of character. They lead only to obedience, acquiescence, and conformity, not to questioning, initiating, self-reliance, and critical thinking. Much of the reform efforts for American high schools rest in the realm of rigor; lip service is paid to relationships and relevance, but only as it serves rigor.

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