Twelve Years Ago, We Got Some Good Advice About Textbook Adoption

Twelve years ago, educators received some powerful words of advice from the Fordham Institute.

Textbook adoption is a fundamentally flawed process: it distorts the market, entices extremist groups to hijack the curriculum, and papers the land with mediocre instructional materials. We do not believe the adoption process can be set right by tinkering with it. Rather, legislators and governors in “adoption” states should devolve funding for and decisions about textbook purchases to individual schools, districts, or even teachers. Instructional materials are key parts of the domain where we should rely on front-line educators to make the best decisions for their pupils. That means that textbook selection and purchasing decisions should be made as close as possible to the teacher, ideally by the teacher herself. If that’s not practical, then they should be made by the school or district”.

Since that time, the textbook review and adoption process has changed very little. Until now.

More and more Florida school districts are choosing to select their own textbooks in a process that is as close as possible to the classroom teacher. This guarantees that the instructional materials are relevant and aligned to their curriculum. This is an important change.

But textbook review is not easy. It can quickly become a process that gets bogged down in the administration and collecting of surveys and opinions – resulting in a frustrating and time-consuming exercise that is paper-rich and data-poor. EdValuate eliminates the paper-chase, and provides the tools to streamline the survey process and aggregate the data in one easy step – saving time, money and ensuring 100% reporting accuracy.

Larry Bolinger, CEO of Bay Haven Charter Academy told us "We really see great possibilities for our teachers and staff utilizing the tools available through EdCredible. With tools like EdValuate, the time saved manifests itself into more time spent on planning and direct instruction. We are excited!"

EdValuate is so easy to use that it enables the school or district to review instructional materials immediately as they become available. So school districts don't have to wait for an "adoption cycle" - they can simply review materials and amend the curriculum as needed. The result? Instructional materials that stay relevant, up-to-date and interesting to students (and teachers!). And, because there is no per survey charge, you can review materials as frequently as you wish.

By putting textbook selection in the hands of teachers, and removing the fundamental flaws of administration with EdValuate, textbooks (and other instructional materials) can indeed become the valuable resources and teaching tools they were intended to be.

EdValuate is brought to you by EdCredible - where our passion is connecting educators with products that work.

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