I must admit, for the most part, my stand for Public Education thus far — my blogging, my political action efforts through my local union, and my petition through SignOn.org — has concentrated on increasing awareness about and working toward an end to Public Education’s obsession with testing. However, my doubts have indeed now solidified into a push to completely rid the system of Common Core Standards. I must recommend Kris Nielsen’s blog post @ At The Chalkface.
My doubts began when I read numerous times about the origin of these standards born from politicians and foundations — with very few actual educators — under the guise of “College and Career Readiness.” Who could argue with that rhetoric? How do we educators claim we are opposed to our students being prepared for higher education and professional careers?
For months, I have read through the Common Core Standards for different grade levels, particularly for English Language Arts. I have listened to educators of varying grade levels speak to the inappropriate standards as per brain development research. I have grimaced at the seemingly narrowing of fiction and creativity for the sake of evidence seeking tasks and manual-style reading.
Putting aside the variable of obsessive testing, I held out some hope for the standards as I was able to appreciate commentary from valued, fellow educators who have gleaned a positive aspect of Common Core’s focus on depth vs. breadth of content. Additionally, I was intrigued by the possibility of a national curriculum — thinking every student in America is deserving of the rigor and opportunities of most New York State’s public school students.
However, as my petition has been requesting since March 3, 2013, NEW YORK STATE STUDENTS DO NOT NEED A RACE TO THE TOP EDUCATION.
Common Core Standards do just as the label suggests: standardize each and every student.
Common Core Standards are political tools to privatize Public Education.
I say NO! WILL YOU JOIN ME?
Arthur Goldstein teaches high school in Queens, New York. Many of his students are English language learners. He blogs at NYC Educator. His blog is one of the best in the nation.
He wrote the following for readers of this blog:
How Smart Will Common Core Make Our Kids?
Judging from the editorials in the papers, you’d think Common Core was the best thing since sliced bread. Actually, sliced bread is highly overrated, as anyone with fresh artisan bread and a good knife can attest.
The Daily News predicts over 60% of our kids could fail Common Core tests, and appears to see this as a good thing. Yet, as a public school teacher, if 60% of my students were to suddenly fail, I highly doubt my principal’s first instinct would be to compliment me on my high standards.
I’m also willing to bet anything my students would not…
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