Myth #3: Rigor is Not for Everyone
Some teachers think the only way to assure success for everyone is to lower standards and lessen rigor. This may mask a hidden belief that some students can’t really learn at high levels. You may have heard of the Pygmalion Effect--students live up to or down to our expectations of them. -
I was recently working with a school where they had one solution for increasing rigor—put all students in advanced classes. That may be an option, but I’m not convinced that is the best way to increase rigor. First, not all students are ready for an advanced class without extra support. Second, that choice sends the message that the only teachers capable of rigorous instruction are those who teach advanced students. I know from my own experience as a teacher of struggling students reading far below their grade level that any teacher can be rigorous, and any student can reach higher levels with the right support.