Not Misinformed: We Know What It Is And We Reject It   3 comments

If we remain bound to the Common Core stranglehold, it will be because a low-information citizenry passively buys the unsubstantiated claims of the proponents of Common Core without doing their own homework on this crucial subject.

Our state school board refuses to let go of its praise-common-core talking points. And it continues to call those of us who care about local control and high, legitimate education standards, “misinformed” even though they won’t return emails letting us know what specifically we seem to be so misinformed about.

Today I read this blog post by Tami Pyfer of the USSB on Utah Policy. http://utahpolicy.com/view/full_story/22848521/article-We-Do-Deserve-Better?instance=newsletter_featured_articles_policy

Here’s what I think as I read her post:

Yes, we deserve better.

We deserve fact-checked information from our state school board. State school board members are in a position of trust and should be held to higher standards. Misinformation being spouted by elected board members is cause for concern.

The Common Core agenda has been presented as being so rigorous, so consensually adopted (which is was not) and so academically legitimate that it is beyond debate. The fact is that the Common Core is a liability, rather than an asset, both in terms of liberty and local control, and in terms of academic strength.

It concerns me, bothers me, and keeps me up at night, that as a credentialed Utah teacher, I am not allowed to meet with my own state school board members, face to face, to get real answers to my concerns about Common Core. I have gone out of my way to try to communicate, to find out what exactly is “erroneous” (their words) about my concerns, but my emails are not being responded to.

There are simple questions.

“Where is the evidence to support the claim that Common Core improves education?”
“Where are the long term studies showing that the reduction of literary study improves college readiness?”
“Where is the amendment process for Utah’s math and English standards under the copyrighted Common Core?”
“How can I opt out of the SLDS tracking system?”
“Where is the legal –constitutional– authority for people outside our state to set our local standards and to create and monitor our tests?”
“Why is Utah allowing Obama to redesign our schools without putting up a fight?”
“Why is there a culture in education today that demands everyone agree or pretend to agree; where is freedom of expression and freedom of speech in all of the Common Core agenda, when teachers and principals fear to dissent or lose their jobs?”
“Where is the evidence that slowing the age at which students learn math algorithms, improves college readiness?”
“Where is the line-item cost analysis of taxpayers’ money being spent on Common Core technologies, teacher trainings and texts?

– There are many, many more questions that need answers. Yes, State School Board, we do deserve better. When will you condescend to actually speak with those who elected you to serve us?

When will you listen? Did you not notice that the Utah State Delegates disapprove Common Core? They voted and they passed the anti-common core resolution. Utah doesn’t want Common Core. Why is the board still defending it?

We are not misinformed. We know what it is we reject it.

When will your board stand up to the federal Dept. of Ed. and its tsunami of assault on liberties, rather than fighting us, the locals who desire nothing more than liberty and high quality education?

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3 responses to “Not Misinformed: We Know What It Is And We Reject It

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  1. common core is wrong
  2. this came out today in the sacremento bee, how can they lie like this?

    http://www.sacbee.com/2013/06/10/5484382/common-core-stirs-furor-whats.html

    common core is wrong
  3. Commissioner Tony Bennett has asked our office to respond to your correspondence regarding Common Core. On behalf of the Commissioner we would like to thank you for contacting us.
    The National Governor’s Association (NGA) and Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) were provided research on education standards across the country and how standards from state-to-state compared to the standards of the highest performing countries on internationally benchmarked assessments in 2006. Additionally, with the high percent of high school graduates required to take remedial courses upon entering post secondary institutions or training upon entering the workplace, there was an agreed upon need to provide consistency among states in the definition of college and career readiness. Governors and state school chiefs sought to address these issues that could negatively effect on our nation’s economy and prosperity.
    A group of state school officers decided to collaborate on the development of high quality, research-based academic standards in English/Language Arts and mathematics. In 2010, after several years of research done by educators and education content experts from across the nation, drafting and public reviews (nearly 10,000 comments), an agreed upon set of standards – the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) were unveiled. These standards define the knowledge and skills students should have within their K-12 education careers so that they will graduate high school able to succeed in entry-level, credit-bearing academic college courses and in workforce training programs. The standards:
    • Are aligned with college and work expectations;
    • Are clear, understandable and consistent;
    • Include rigorous content and application of knowledge through high-order skills;
    • Build upon strengths and lessons of current state standards;
    • Are informed by other top performing countries, so that all students are prepared to succeed in our global economy and society; and
    • Are evidence-based.

    Florida’s State Board of Education voluntarily adopted the CCSS in 2010 followed by more than 40 states in 2011. This is the third set of English language arts and mathematics standards adopted in Florida. The Florida State Board of Education adopted the Sunshine State Standards in 1996 and has been a leader in the United States for ensuring all students have access to education standards and assessments that match those standards. Florida’s Parent Teacher Association (PTA) former president spoke at the June State Board of Education meeting in support of Florida’s adoption of the Common Core State Standards. For parent support information on the Common Core State Standards go to: http://pta.org/index.cfm.

    Implementation of state adopted standards occurs at the local level; however, the state is committed to supporting local districts and schools in any and all capacities possible during the transition. Per Florida statute, all school districts are funded through the state legislature. Districts then make appropriate allocations to support local schools during the implementation process. School districts continue to have jurisdiction over the curriculum they chose to teach the standards and teachers continue to have the jurisdiction to determine the instructional methods used in the classroom that best fits the needs of the students. The state is working with districts to ensure they have the capacity to administer the aligned assessments and provide quality instruction to Florida students. Full implementation with aligned assessments will occur during the 2014-15 academic year.

    We encourage you to speak with local educators and administrators about the CCSS and the local implementation process in your county. By and large, educators across the state and nation support the standards as they provide educators the flexibility to develop strong curriculum materials and instructional practices to utilize in their classrooms.

    We appreciate your efforts to understand more about the Common Core State Standards and thank you for your dedication to Florida’s students.

    If the Bureau of Curriculum & Instruction can be of further assistance, please contact Katrina Figgett, Director of School Libraries and Information Services at (850) 245-0758, or via e-mail at Katrina.Figgett@fldoe.org.
    Sincerely,

    Teresa Sweet, Chief
    Bureau of Curriculum & Instruction
    TS/kf/p

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