Saturday, November 5, 2011

Education Reform: Parents, community members, taxpayers, and experts excluded

In May 2011, Grumpy Educators reported that two experts involved in writing the Common Core standards refused to sign the final product. On October 29, Parents Across America published Stotsky's views on the development process. Stotsky says to her knowledge no parents were involved in the development process and the primary writers had no prior experience in writing standards.

She adds additional insights to the composition of the writing process:

What struck me when I first saw the CCSSI lists of committee members was that there were almost no high school teachers of math or English, or college-level instructors of either on these lists–and here was a project to develop college-readiness standards, supposedly. The exclusion of the two teaching groups most relevant to CCSSI’s explicit goal was my first tip-off that CCSSI had a different agenda.

Mainly testing people and a few employees of Achieve and America’s Choice were on these committees. The media never commented on such peculiar committee membership. After my complaints on the Validation Committee, one or two high school teachers were added. But Jim Milgram remained the only mathematician in this group, and I was the only one who understood ELA standards-writing.

Parents, community members, and taxpayers continue to be left out of education reform initiatives. At a presentation of the new statndards, New York city parents demonstrated their impatience with their exclusion from decision-making:

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