~ Written by Marissa Moldoch ~
Florida recently approved the Classic Learning Test (CLT) as an accepted college admissions test, fueling the larger conversation about Classical Education.
Although The Sunshine State’s decision surprised some and struck others as too radical, this isn't the first time an alternative to the SAT and ACT has made headlines. “The ‘Smarter Balanced Exam’ is being considered or accepted by colleges in California and South Dakota. It's already the state standard in several other states across grade levels, from elementary to high school,” reports Chris Stewart.
If the CLT wasn’t the first standardized test to deviate from the status quo, why has it sparked so much debate? “The controversy is focused on the content within the test, which critics say focuses too heavily on religious texts and writings and claims overemphasizes Christian sources,” says Stewart.
While opponents have been quick to call out the CLT (and Classical Education, on the whole) for its countercultural messages, they haven’t dissuaded the administrators in Florida’s Miami-Dade County school district from considering the classical model for their elementary students. “By considering its implementation in traditional public schools, the district aims to provide students with a different educational approach that focuses on the classics and religious theories,” writes Leo Gallagher. “This move is part of a broader trend in Florida, where classical education has gained attention and support in recent years.”
Those of us who have experience with the field of classical education should encourage skeptics to investigate, while embracing those who are ready to adopt the tried-and-true liberal arts approach.