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Monday, May 25, 2015

SHIFT IN LOOKING AT SSLC RESULTS and SCHOOL QUALITY



SHIFT IN LOOKING AT SSLC RESULTS and SCHOOL QUALITY
Discussion paper
April 2015
Dr. K.M. Unnikrishnan
Principal, DIET Palakkad

The quality of a secondary school has so far been evaluated based on SSLC results. The SSLC results have been looked and tried to understand through the angle of outputs alone, ie, the total number of students written SSLC examination Vs the number of students passed in the examination. The focus was giving answer to a single question, ‘How many students have passed/secured different grades the/in the examination. It is a followed by a jugglery of making different combinations and comparisons between the same set of data. This practice, proclaimed as fixing ‘accountability’ on teachers and schools is superficial and doesn’t contribute towards any kind of
  • analysing school culture,
  • assessing the usefulness of inputs applied in schools,
  • analysing the processes used in the classrooms and in schools to improve students’ learning,
  • finding out the extent of student success and how students from different home background faced the learning programme
  • eliciting evidences that inform school authorities to design learning and school programmes in future
It arranges students, schools and school districts in a neat and linear row making it easy for people to know who is in the front and who is placed at the backend of the row.
This calls for a new way of analysing and evaluating SSLC as a learning programme. The components to be used for such kind of analysis may include the outputs, the outcomes and process factors. Here an attempt has been made to develop input-process-outcome-context framework, used for categorising and describing input indicators, process indicators, outcome indicators and context indicators.

I.Output indicators of school functioning
  • Number of students passed the examination
  • Subject specific pass and grades
  • Proportion of students and their graduation rates (gender, caste, religion, family background etc)

II . Outcome indicators of school functioning (Student learning, skills, and values developed)
  • Number of students passed categorised according to grades secured
  • Trends of change or progress that students made over the term examinations
  • Attendance rate of students in students’ camps, subject-clinics etc
III. Process indicators of school functioning
  • The degree of actual involvement of parents in various school activities
  • The percentage of the total annual school budget that is obtained from the local community
  • School level pupil teacher ratio
  • Average class size per school
  • Proportion of availability of teachers during the academic year per school
  • The number of changes in staff over the academic year
  • The amount of time Headmasters spend on educational matters compared to administrative and
  • other tasks
  • The amount of time dedicated to instructional issues during staff meetings
  • The presence or absence of school subject groups (subject-councils)
  • Frequency and duration of formal and informal staff meetings
  • Orderly and safe climate at school
  • Maintaining statistics on absenteeism and delinquency of students
  • Efficient use of time
  • Total instruction time and time per subject
  • Average loss of time per teaching hour (due to organisation, moving to different rooms, locations, disturbances)
  • Percentage of lessons ‘‘not taken ’’, on an annual basis
  • Evaluation of pupils’ progress and support programme based on students’ needs
  • The frequency of use of curriculum-specific unit tests
  • Quality of instruction and instructional methods used by teachers
  • Adapting instruction to different groups of students
  • Stimulating learning environment and teacher-student relationships
  • Mutual respect among students and teachers and between student and teacher community
  • Adaptive teaching
  • Students’ use of learning resources
  • Cooperative learning and hands-on-learning
  • Provisions for specialised students’ services-guidance and counselling
IV. Context indicators of school functioning
  • General student background characteristics
  • General intelligence or scholastic aptitude
  • Socio-economic status of students
  • Parents’ level of educational attainment
  • Student background characteristics associated with specific situational constraints
  • Discrepancy between language spoken at home and language at school
  • Distance a student has to travel/walk to school
  • The amount of out of school time a student has to spent on work/labour
  • Whether the students has had a meal when arriving at school
  • Place to study at home
  • Number of books in the home
  • Malnutrition
  • Family atmosphere and relationship among family members
If we apply these set of indicators to assess school quality (not the results alone) where will our schools and district stand in relation to schools in other districts of Kerala? Please think.

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