Scotland takes different path than U.S., England to educate students

06/23/2013 | New York Times (tiered subscription model), The

While the U.S. and England have focused on assessments and testing in education, Scotland's schools have gone another route -- instead prioritizing a more flexible and interdisciplinary curriculum, fewer exams and focusing on debate and discussion, rather than memorization. "Some people believe that increasing assessment increases standards, but we've moved away from that," said Barry Smedley, deputy head of a school in Scotland. "It used to be that only students who did well on exams were thought of as the smart ones. But we've learned that there are different kinds of smart, different kinds of intelligence."

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