New York which had tremendous amounts of kids opting out … Their findings are:
- The State’s original process to adopt the more than 1,500 Common Core Standards failed to include meaningful input by educators and was not done in a sufficiently open and transparent manner.
- The Common Core Standards may not be age-appropriate in early grades including K-2.
- The Common Core Standards do not adequately address unique student populations, such as English Language Learners and Students with Disabilities.
- The Standards are too rigid and need to be adaptable with more local school district and educator input.
- There was not enough time for teachers to develop curriculum aligned to the Common Core because much of the sample curriculum resources were not available until after the Common Core Standards were already adopted in schools.
- The State-provided curriculum created by the State Education Department (SED) is complicated and difficult to use.
- There is widespread belief that the curriculum does not allow for local district input, lacks breadth, and is too one-size-fits-all.
- There was a lack of State Education Department (SED) transparency and of parent, educator, and other stakeholder engagement in the development of the Common Core-aligned tests by the corporation hired by SED…..
- There are concerns that students are spending too much time preparing for and taking tests and that teachers were only “teaching to the test.”
- The Common Core tests do not properly account for Students with Disabilities and create unnecessary duplicative testing for English Language Learners
The Task Force recommends that the Common Core Standards should be revised to reflect the particular needs and priorities of New York State, and to address the serious barriers to successful implementation that have been identified by the Task Force. The Task Force makes the following 21 recommendations to properly implement a new system:
- Adopt high quality New York education standards with input from local districts, educators, and parents through an open and transparent process.
- Modify early grade standards so they are age-appropriate.
- Ensure that standards accommodate flexibility that allows educators to meet the needs of unique student populations, including Students with Disabilities and English Language Learners.
- Ensure standards do not lead to the narrowing of curriculum or diminish the love of reading and joy of learning.
- Establish a transparent and open process by which New York standards are periodically reviewed by educators and content area experts.
- Ensure educators and local school districts have the flexibility to develop and tailor curriculum to the new standards.
- Release updated and improved sample curriculum resources.
- Launch a digital platform that enables teachers, including pre-service teachers, and teacher educators, to share resources with other teachers across the state.
- Create ongoing professional development opportunities for teachers, teacher educators, and administrators on the revised State standards.
- Involve educators, parents, and other education stakeholders in the creation and periodic review of all State standards-aligned exams and other State assessments.
- Gather student feedback on the quality of the new tests.
- Provide ongoing transparency to parents, educators, and local districts on the quality and content of all tests, including, but not limited to publishing the test questions.
- Reduce the number of days and shorten the duration for standards-aligned State standardized tests.
- Provide teachers with the flexibility and support to use authentic formative assessments to measure student learning.
- Undertake a formal review to determine whether to transition to untimed tests for existing and new State standardized tests aligned to the standards.
- Provide flexibility for assessments of Students with Disabilities
- Protect and enforce testing accommodations for Students with disabilities.
- Explore alternative options to assess the most severely disabled students.
- Prevent students from being mandated into Academic Intervention Services based on a single test.
- Eliminate double testing for English Language Learners.
- Until the new system is fully phased in, the results from assessments aligned to the current Common Core Standards, as well as the updated standards, shall only be advisory and not be used to evaluate the performance of individual teachers or students….
The Task Force finds the following steps should be taken to properly implement a new system for the nearly 700 school districts and 5,000 schools and more than 200,000 teachers and 2.65 million students in the state:
• A comprehensive review of the more than 1,500 standards in Common Core in an open and transparent manner with significant input by educators, parents, local districts and other education stakeholders, with careful consideration of the appropriateness of these standards in early childhood, and for Students with Disabilities and English Language Learners.
• After the comprehensive review of the Common Core Standards, there must be modification, elimination, or creation of standards to form rigorous New York-specific standards.
• Thereafter, the new standards must be reviewed in an open and transparent manner before adoption.
• After the standards are finalized, the State must engage educators to create and disseminate sample curriculum units.
• The State sample curricula must allow time to be modified by the 700 local school districts and 200,000 teachers in order to ease the transition to updated standards while ensuring that local educators have the flexibility to tailor instruction to the needs of their students.
• Adequate time must be allotted for the State to train local administrators and teacher educators on the new standards and develop their capacity in order to lead a seamless transition to the new system.
• Sufficient time for the State and local school districts to help educators unpack and understand the new standards, design curriculum to meet local needs, and adapt instruction.
• A parent engagement process at the local school district level about the new standards, local curriculum, and assessments.
• An overhaul of the current testing system, including reducing the duration and frequency of test days and increasing test transparency to help students, teachers, and parents understand results and use these to inform instruction and support student learning.
• The creation of new assessments aligned with the new standards that incorporate significant involvement of and input from teachers, teacher educators, local districts, and other education stakeholders….
If Delaware had a similar task force, these would be it’s recommendations as well. However, that we do not have.
We need one, and considering the recalcitrance from the executive branch, the legislative branch needs to step up and become the parent here….. The spoiled child needs put in his place.