The idea that emerges is a selection machine that perpetuates and favors the same defects that the school seems to feed on insatiably. And it gives immense attention to form at the expense of substance
It was a bit like in the famous scene from “Me and Annie”. In the queue for the cinema, Woody Allen overhears an academic pontifying about Marshall McLuhan until Marshall McLuhan himself comes out and scolds the fake expert for being incompetent. The same thing happened with Ministry of Educationas a few days ago received a pec from Howard Gardner: the American psychologist pointed out to whom it may relate that the teacher competition question regarding his definition of intelligence was posed in an inappropriate form so that none of the four possible answers were correct.
It’s just one of those numerous stumbles – more and more are being discovered – where the ministry has undertaken to prepare the notorious ones cross-questions for the competition for the selection of new permanent teachers. Massimo Arcangeli, who teaches at the University of Cagliari and is a careful, if not heroic, judge of the use of the Italian language, has begun to report the most unacceptable mistakes in questions (including a “what is” with apostrophe) to create a significant case, which he now draws attention to whoever it may concern, along with an appeal that the ministry acknowledges “mistakes made by formulating unreliable questions and redefining candidate scores”.
It is understood that fallibility characterizes the human species even among ministerial officials – and that a limited percentage of blunders is not enough to justify the low level of some candidates – the stratification of errors in competition issues teaches us many things about the Italian school. We can catalog them in four macro categories. Several answers expressed in ambiguous and misleading terms. Wrong answers (or imaginary ones, like the “hexagonal parallelogram” that drove the web crazy) are listed by the ministry as correct. Next, the questions about content that is not included in the Treasury or refers to outdated contexts, such as the one about the OECD, which remained unchanged in the member countries in 2018.
Finally, there are many questions that contain significant errors. This is the case with the one that requires you to recognize the beginning of the Stars’ “Tristram Shandy,” without considering how the quoted passage actually exists toward the end of the book. Arcangeli argues that some of the offensive questions are likely copied from unreliable online sources, the same ones students use to snatch a six-minus from the tests. It is noteworthy that various inaccuracies are concentrated on issues of bureaucratic concepts, such as those on the recommendation of the European Council of 22 May 2018 or on what the curriculum is in the teaching of an L2, not to mention the case if I do not know which descriptor is at point B1.1 or B2.1 i I do not know which legislative framework.
The idea that emerges is a competition that has already been patched together in its intentions, a selection machine that perpetuates and favors the same flaws that the school seems to feed insatiably.. Accepting an answer like the hexagonal parallelogram does not matter what the words mean, but simply the fact that they are aligned. Forcing a program and then forgetting it when asking questions or using expired references does not mean knowing how to read the context we are exaggerating, not paying attention to the surrounding world. Giving ambiguous answers as alternatives means believing that the competition must be tackled by making a scam, with trick questions, selecting on the basis of cunning or luck. Including incorrect content in the questions means that not knowing what you are talking about reduces the insolvency process to a mastodon supercazzola: as it becomes clear when it comes to questions of legislation.
All this can be summed up in the fact that the school is immensely aware of the form and to an artificial form, a language game that exists only within the social framework of the school itself – to the detriment of the substance. For this reason, Arcangeli’s dossier and appeal, no matter how willing, risks being counterproductive, as the idea that the problem is only of a formal nature disappears; so much that yesterday, the Senate hastened to change the recruitment decree by eliminating more responses from future competitions, putting a cross over the crosses and letting this competition rot in its irreparability.
The problem, on the other hand, is significant. It is not a question of how to select permanent teachers, but of why, for what purpose. If the new generations of teachers are to revive the institutes in which they are to work, maintain enthusiasm and guarantee a contribution specially adapted to their individuality, they will certainly not be found by checking their lexical adherence to pre-established formulas or pressing those about pseudo-scientific didactic uselessness. . You need to hire them with school-by-school interviews, tailored to special needs, as happens with scouting professionals in the real world. If, on the other hand, they are to be placed in a bureaucratic and outdated school, screwed so much on didactic formalisms and planning where the merits are not sufficiently recognized either among the students or among the teachers, well, perhaps this competition is full. of mistakes is the best way to show them what awaits them.