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Today is School Board Elections…Polls are open 10-8… If anyone is sponsored by Markell or Rodell or RTTT or WSFS, don’t vote for them.. If anyone is sponsored by DSEA, they are on the students side. They are safe.
So go out and vote like a goat… Be… B-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-D
Common Core is being defeated. Some states like Delaware are doubling down which is about as effective as using children fo stem the Russian Invasions of Berlin. Most states are abandoning the idea before they lose their investment…..
Common Core is actually uniting various groups once thought completely unmixable, bonding them in opposition to its implementation. Called “Obamacore” by Conservatives.. Called a “Mistake” by Teachers Unions. Called a “Boondoggle” by state legislators trying to find ways to pay for its cost. Called a “National Disgrace” by Progressives worried over its damage to our international competitiveness. Called a “Tyranny” by the Tea Party, outraged over the complete loss of local control…
One entity still defends it. Wall Street and those who serve it.
For those of you who don’t know, Common Core was actually developed by our state’s Governors. Jack Markell was a one of the leaders who pushed this. The program was then adopted by Obama and under his secretary of Education, Arne Duncun, all federal money as been tied to its implementation.
In fairness, I like Common Core. It embodies most of the ideas I have stressed since blogging. However, though it sounds great in theory, I must admit, it is not working. Our children are being denied a great education because we are teaching remedial math and remedial English over and over again for one reason…. to boost test scores. The reason for this focus on test scores,is because that is how we determine which schools we will close down, which principals will be forced to resign, and which teachers will be fired.
Obviously in that environment, all a child will learn, is how to take the test, and how to score the most points with their answers. Nothing of which will help them or help us in the real world when they become our newest generation of the employed….
The problem is not with the principles or aims of Common Core. The problem lies with the tests and their current use as a weapon to hold over people’s heads. The tests were meant to be used as a tool for analysis… How much did Johnny know in September. How much does Johnny know in January? How much will Johnny know in June? What a great tool if it were honestly applied and not doctored up, contorted, or flagrantly adjusted in order to prevent a horrible outcome that has absolutely nothing to do with each student’s educational needs!
From the American Teachers Union –Randi Weingarten….““The Common Core is in trouble, There is a serious backlash in lots of different ways, on the right and on the left.”
Across the nation states are rushing out tests based on the new standards without preparing teachers and designing new curricula… Here the states are saying… “Take this test you’ve never seen. If you don’t do good, you’ll lose your job.” “Kid, on this test you’ve never seen, you did bad. You can’t graduate despite your 4.0 average.” “Ladies and Gentlemen; parents of this district! Your attention please! We have to close this school because your students, failed this test on stuff they’ve never seen.”
That is why parents are fighting back. 8 moms in Texas have pushed a bill in Texas to roll back the number of tests required to graduate from 15 to 5. Governor Perry will veto it.
Alabama, Indiana, Georgia and South Dakota have legislation ongoing to pull or modify Common Core Standards.
Kentucky just had a 30-40 point drop in scores because of Common Core. The assessment you took this year was much more rigorous than anything that you’ve had before. It takes three or four years for the teachers and the kids to catch up.
But legislators are not the ground level.. Teachers are. New York put a message board so teachers could comment on issues they were having with Common Core implementation….. Most of the comments are negative.
There is something wrong with the timing of this test. I thought we were testing kids on their ability to really read closely but all they had time to do was rush rush rush. Also what was weird was the passages were not that hard – so it’s not going to look that hard. And the questions weren’t that hard. But the answers were ridiculous. Adults with PhDs wouldn’t have known which were the right answers sometimes – really. But when you have barely a minute to think about it, it really became a test of how much you could rush or how much you could remember off the top of your head….
My sixth grader was in tears after the second day of the test. Didn’t even get to the essay – has NEVER had that happen before. What’s the point of making kids feel this awful about themselves? He’s a good student, now he feels terrible
What’s up with reading four pages of directions to the kids before they start? My English Language Learners were in a daze…
Watched my child do test prep booklets, test prep mornings, test prep afterschool, even test prep Saturdays. Then she didn’t even get to finish the test. Taking her to a bookstore this afternoon to find some real reading..
Third graders had to keep rereading and rereading these long answers to find them in the passages. Is that really what we want third graders doing? I’m worried about them poring over these small details forever.
The test wasn’t hard at all but timely. Students couldn’t finish the exam. How can we judge students on an essay when they weren’t able to do the essay because of timing. Common core wasn’t written to test speed reading it was written I believe for deeper comprehension. Its almost as if we set up our students for failure. Also for a company to use text from their books in an exam seems unethical and unfair. Lastly I wonder if the writers of the test should be judged on some of the grammatical errors that occurred in the answers that seemed not to make sense and often times looked like two choices could answer the questions…..
Including questions that were both tedious to interpret and would require the stamina of an Olympic athlete to answer is at best unrealistic, and at worst, cruel. I am also baffled by the decision to include texts that are recommended on the Engage NY website in terms of level of complexity for 7th graders, on a 5th grade exam. Is the message for teachers then that grade-level reading is now inadequate and instead, all students should be reading several grades above their level?…
Is your blood boiling yet? If you have children, I’d be willing to bet it is….
Spend an evening reading what is really going on with Common Core….
Then, do something about it….. Start with calling your Governor….
Lucy Calkins, a professor at Teachers’ College at Columbia University: “I’m a big supporter of the Common Core. I wrote the best-selling book about it,” Calkins said. “But this makes even me question it.”
As someone who has given and taken myriads of academic tests, there is a standard rule. Don’t concentrate on the topic; concentrate on the tester. Meaning that if you know how a test is graded, you can outsmart it.
Here are some examples… First , math.
There are many reasons why students equipped with all the necessary math knowledge don’t always score well on the SAT math section, but the main one is unfamiliarity with the exam. Just like any teacher, the Collegeboard employs several tricks to throw students off and reward those who have studied more and have paid closer attention to the details of the exam.
Questions that may not actually be that tough, but a scary graph or new technique will have several students saying “I’ll skip this one and come back to it later…”. If there is a very tricky or intimidating problem towards the beginning or middle, odds are that the question itself is pretty simple, but Collegeboard is attempting to frighten you away from the question.
Since often the underlying math concepts aren’t too challenging in and of themselves, Collegeboard often employs confusing / tricky language to get students to solve for the wrong variable, pick a related (but incorrect) answer choice, or miss out on a crucial piece of information…
The impulse is to start “doing math” as quickly as you can in this timed environment, but unfortunately the Collegeboard knows this and they will trick you if you don’t manage your time to thoroughly read the question and understand what is being asked.
“Use “plethora”, and “myriad” and 5 other big words.. Don’t be concerned if you are using them incorrectly.
Add a quotation in the fifth paragraph. Don’t worry if it doesn’t fit.
Fill both pages, content doesn’t matter, length does.”
Why? The readers grading these essays have to grade 30-40 test per hour. They are given one and a half to two minutes to appraise and grade your two page 5 paragraph article.
MIT did a test. They wrote the best essay ever…. Highest score, .. .. Now read it. It makes no sense.
This, my friends and fellow countrymen, is what testing is doing to our educational system….
The profit return on testing is close to 85% … The costs are minimal, some paper, some ink, some graders, and you charge $100 per test.
And let’s not even get into the part where the tests are graded wrong, AND WHEN EXPOSED ARE NOT CORRECTED.
That is why it is being force fed. If you give a school a failing grade, they will buy more tests to test themselves out of their hole…..
Education is not about student achievement anymore.
Here is the blog that has been quoted recently by the mainstream press, especially after the video went viral, and they had to scramble to cover up the fact they originally tried to whitewash the incident.
“DUMB COLLEGE KIDS”, the right wing pundits squeal…
Try an Assistant Professor in the Department of English, who organized the peaceful demonstration.
Or try an Associate Professor of English, who was grabbed by her hair, thrown on the ground.
Or try Associate Professor Geoffrey O’Brien who was injured by baton blows.
or try Professor Robert Hass, former Poet Laureate of the United States, National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize winner, who was also struck with a baton.
I wonder how this child’s mom feels right now: One of them, forty-five minutes after being pepper-sprayed down his throat, was still coughing up blood.
Or the dad who was there, bedside, to welcome this bundle of joy into the world.
Or the Grandparents of these children… When students covered their eyes with their clothing, police forced open their mouths and pepper-sprayed down their throats.
What’s the point? What were you trying to prove, Mr Rogue Policeman? Ohhhhh, that you were sooooooooo tough… I bet all the women flock to you now, don’t they?
What were you trying to prove, Chancellor Katehi? That you have an iron will? Or that you didn’t care? You had to appease the wealthy donors. The tents were such an eyesore and had to be removed, even with the potential for a loss of life?
What were you trying to prove, Republicans? Cutting taxes. Underfunding institutions of learning. Trimming school budgets so the wealthy wouldn’t have to pay their fair share of the cost of living in American society…
Go ahead. Save them a couple of pennies…. Beat the student’s senseless.. Fill their lungs with pepper spray… Ram their lower abdomens with your batons. Make them unable to ever bear children…. Do it for your wealthy master. All so millionaires can save one more penny on the dollar they’ve already taken from us…
Oh, no… Wait… Why didn’t we think of that before… If you kill us all off now, you won’t get back your student loans we borrowed from you at those exorbitant amounts of interest you so graciously parted your money for….
Republican contender for president Herman Cain, today showed his true color. Although accepted as a new voice in the Republican party, his diatribe today, the one belittling the occupiers of Wall Street, shows he has little care or concern for those or us making up the entire middle class…
He sees the symptom. He misses the problem.
Recently he claimed he had a bullseye on his back and people were taking pot shots at him. With today’s comments it appears he is no exception… He shot himself.
On CBS today he stated that: the protesters “jealous’ Americans who “play the victim card” and want to “take somebody else’s” Cadillac.
When in truth, Americans don’t want to take someone’s used Cadillac. They’d just like to be able again to buy their own… with their own money.
The key word is “again.”
We once had that option. buying Cadillacs with our own money, until Republicans handed that option over to Wall Street…
The current Occupy Wall Street protest can be significant if it moves America towards the discussion as to how we got into this economic miasma ..
We got here by deregulating our finance industry which allowed them to gamble recklessly; we got here by dropping the wealthiest’s taxes which gave them more of our money to gamble with, and we got here because no one was looking too hard, (or purposefully looking the other way) at what they were doing…
All byproducts of Republican philosophy.
To achieve greatness, America again needs to return taxes on the top 1% back to normal levels, regulate the wild gambling being done by the very banks entrusted with keeping money safe, taking place with our very own checking and savings accounts, , and increase the bureaucracy that watches over Wall Street and investments.
Three things, and America will be great again.
Cain, who looked decent up until his remarks today, obviously has no clue how Americans are coping day to day… Someone that insensitive, should not be representing us as our Chief Executive Officer.
It should be good news… more people are working than expected.
How great is that?
“Well, we were expecting this many people to have gained jobs, but… no, instead we got much more than we expected!….”
One would think the stock market would bounce on the good news!
Actually, 154,000 jobs were created in the private sector. This offsets the 37,000 Federal government jobs cut July by the Republican’s actions……
154,000 jobs? Under a Democrat president? What’s going on here?
Obviously the stimulus is working. Obama was right to deficit spend to keep up demand for services….
And I bet you’re enjoying your commute on all those newly paved roads too, aren’t you?
Now contrast this with a Republican regime… Potholes galore because they cut taxes. Pot holes galore because the wealthiest top 1% was allowed to keep $1.2 trillion that normally flowed into much needed services…
Can’t you see what’s happening? Obama showed us the way…. WE NEED SPENDING ON INFRASTUCTURE. WE NEED SPENDING TO MAKE AMERICA A MORE LIVABLE COMMUNITY……
Because of Republican legislation, to get to that level of spending, we had to borrow… but doesn’t it make a lot more sense to tax the top 1% that 1.2 trillion, and have this quality of life, without the deficit?