Don’t let politics colour educational evidence

Bunsen Blue

Everyone involved in education wants pupils to succeed. It is likely that most will agree on definitions of success such as access to the best universities, a good base of knowledge across a range of subjects and skills such as speaking for an audience, for example. But the means to achieve these is subject to hot debate, most notably in the form of the progressive vs. traditional debate.

A contradiction that stifles progress, is when people stop thinking about what genuinely works in education by looking at what is strongly evidenced, and instead, politically oppose certain pedagogies. The very notion that politics and pedagogy are on the same spectrum is fatally flawed; fatal for rational thinking and fatal for the education of our children.

An example of this is the pedagogy of direct instruction. As it stands, there is a myriad of evidence supporting the conclusion that direct instruction is superior…

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