The Wawascene was created by Dr. Mark Stock, former Superintendent of the Wawasee Community School Corporation. Due to its local popularity, Dr. Stock has left the blog site to future Wawasee administrators.

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Monday, November 28, 2005

Why we don't want to be Japan!

Most educators have grown weary of reading the steady supply of national "bad news" about where America ranks internationally on different standardized exams. The truth is we rank pretty well on most measures but you won't read about it very often.

Throughout this week, I will run a few short highlights that point out the good news in education that you won't find in the mass media.

I'll start with a recent quote from Joseph Renzulli, who was reporting on why a group of Japanese educators were visiting his National Research Center on the Gifted and Talented. Renzulli expressed astonishment that Japanese educators with the highest test scores in the world would think they could learn something from us. This was their reply, a direct quote:
"Very simple professor. We have no Nobel Prize Winners. Your schools have produced a continuous flow of inventors, designers, entrepreneurs, and innovative leaders. We can make anything you invent faster, cheaper and, in most cases, better. But we want to learn what role this "creative productivity" focus plays in the production of creative and inventive people."

So I ask you, do you want your children and grandchildren to lead the world in the creation of ideas, products and services or to bubble in answer sheets with the world's best? It doesn't have to be an either/or question, but I'll at least settle for schools that "produce a continuous flow of inventors, designers, entrepreneurs and innovative leaders."

Source: Renzulli, Joseph: "Neglecting Creativity: A Quiet Crisis Clouding the Future of R&D." Education Week, May 25,2005.

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