The administrative office in the Delaware Department of Education is trying to keep up with all the paperwork it is being fed. It is failing. If the Delaware Department of Education were to receive a grade, it would not be a passing one…..

The state of Delaware administered state “pretested” in math and ELA late Nov & early Dec…. then in a surprise delivery FedEx’d to the schools, they finally received bubble sheets! (Bubble sheets are the answer forms where you fill in the circles for answers A<B<C<D<E..) They arrived Monday this week, two weeks after testing. Students were then given the tests they had previously taken and told to bubble in their responses. These bubble sheets are dated 9/01/2012. Students then bubbled in their Nov 30 responses today. These tests will be part of each teachers component V evaluation.

Obviously the DOE purchaser/controller thought the answers came with the test packets… “I didn’t know they’d charge for the tests and then charge extra for the bubble packs? They never used to before we went with this (use this one only) corporate supplier….”

(Of course they’d be separate! What part of “We Profit Off Of Education” don’t you understand?)

Now pretend you are a student. You actually like learning. You get pulled out of instruction to take a test. Ok, you live with that. Then you get pulled out again, to fill in the answers because you were not given the proper tools the first time. Put yourself back 20,30,40,50 years. How many of you, since obviously the entire test was a joke anyways, would fill in all “A”s” to get it over with?

I would.

So, was this entire thing arranged to force test scores to be low, enabling the DOE to fire anyone who doesn’t support them fully? It actually is a good idea if they thought or it. What a brilliant way to get rid of the DSEA. “Sorry, your scores are a zero. You’re fired….”

I doubt that. But, either way, the signal sent to every student who had to retake the test, was that our schools are incompetent.

Anyone familiar with corporate philosophy readily understands what is happening. In corporate takeovers, you destroy, then you build up. Often, you go bankrupt.

So Jack. some advice: here is what you need to do..

Have every teacher drop a line to the DSEA expressing their frustration and recommendation.

In Dover Downs, a one day meeting with every teacher in the state. Special holiday for kids. Early February at the latest.

“Teachers: We are here because the corporate system is not working. There are good elements that we want to keep. How can we form a union between teachers and corporate sponsors, so everyone is covering the backs of the other? We need this fixed. We need you to do it”.

Let the top ten best responses to the questionnaire each give a 5 minute talk…

Then let the discussion begin and sit back and try to find a broad solution that accomplishes the mission. Which is? To teach kids.

Be prepared to scrap excessive testing. Be prepared to scrap evaluations. From what I hear that is sucking time away from teaching. Be prepared to incarcerate bully students, without parental approval.

Just some ideas.

But if you don’t bring on the teachers in your race to the top, it won’t fly.