Justin Murphy, writer for the D&C reported recently that Sister Diana Dolce, founder and principal of Hope Hall, a private school for students with learning disabilities, will be working with the Rochester City School District “to provide professional development and consultation at North-STAR, a small district-run program for students with significant mental health and behavioral trouble.”
The students attending the district’s North-STAR program are not simply student’s with learning disabilities, they are “students with significant mental health and behavioral trouble” who have been warehoused and moved around like inventory because the district has no idea how to meet their needs.
“Starting this fall, she and her staff will provide training to NorthSTAR staff on the themes of building relationships with students and creating differentiated lesson plans that don’t leave any students behind. That training and consultation will happen every few weeks during the school year, to be followed next summer by a more intensive session.”
Building relationships and differentiated lessons are not part of the common core curriculum. What happens to the district students who, after having been taught by the Dolce method, will now have to sit through common core testing?
“The teachers are going to have to develop a whole different mindset,” Dolce said.”
Therein lies the rub.
The teachers are not going to develop a whole different mindset because they have been conditioned to believe that there is something wrong with these “kids”, that they are less than capable of learning, that they are needy because they live in poverty and are less likely to succeed.
Before providing teachers with attitudes and lessons that they cannot and will not use, it will first be necessary, as Sister Dolce suggests, to change the mindset of not only the teachers but the attitudes and minds of those who would standardize all of us to an artificial norm that excludes every and anyone who exists outside that norm.
When we recognize and respect the gifts and talents of all of our children, the Hope of World peace will fill the halls of education.
Join the Movement to Save Our Children!