Dr. Joseph Rella, Superintendent of Comsewogue School District in New York State, spoke to about two thousand parents on Saturday at a rally the superintendent called for, in order to stop Common Core.
Parents cheered wildly throughout the speech. One voice shouted out, “You’re our hero, Dr. Rella!” and the crowd broke out into loud cheers and applause over and over.
Countless parents in other school districts all over America are praying that their own superintendents will show the kind of courage and leadership that Dr. Rella displayed on Saturday. Thank you, Dr. Rella.
Here is the video of the speech Dr. Rella gave at the history-making event.
At minute 00:30 Dr. Rella said:
“To a greater or lesser extent, all of us have felt helpless, demoralized, frustrated, scared, angry, frightened for our children’s futures… Things have changed so much; they have, haven’t they? Well, remember. We– all of us– have been passengers on a plane being built in mid air, as our commissioner described his APPR initiative, but it applies to so many other things that are happening. There are a lot of planes. The Common Core plane, the PARCC plane. Well, none of that sad stuff today. None. No long faces because today, we are cancelling our flight reservations.
…Today’s message is a very simple and very important one. The New York State Common Core Initiative, its implementation and testing regimen is hurting our children and it must stop now.
… Any test designed to have 70% of the children taking it, fail, is abusive. We have to ask the question: what’s right about it? What’s right about any initiative that puts families in turmoil, puts dedicated people in fear of losing their livelihoods, and now the ultimate… damaging a child’s self-image and altering perhaps permanently a child’s self-definition? They should be ashamed of themselves.
… If you want to know how your child is doing in school, ask your child’s teacher. Ask your child’s principal.
…STOP IT, FIX IT, or SCRAP IT.
…I would like to put this as a motion before this magnificent assembly, a motion to approve the following resolution:
Whereas, the New York Common Core Initiative, implementation and testing regimen hurts children, and whereas, we believe that our children are a light, a beacon, and that this light is in serious jeopardy of being extinguished by this abusive initiative, now therefore be it resolved; we call upon the Governor, the Regents, the Commissioner of Education, and the state legislature, to call a halt to it immediately and have it examined by educators.
If it’s capable of being fixed, fix it. If it is not, then throw it out. Stop it, fix it or scrap it. Do I have a second for that motion? All in favor say Aye. [Cheering- AYE!] All opposed? [silence] The motion carries.”