From our mailbag
To address those issues, OEA members called for immediate suspension of outdated testing that does not align with the new Common Core State Standards and demanded comprehensive state and local support for the Common Core to bolster chances for successful implementation and challenging learning opportunities for students.
The moratorium on outdated high-stakes testing must begin now, said OEA President Patricia Frost-Brooks. “It defies common sense for students, teachers, and schools to be held accountable for test scores based on standards that have been rejected by educators – and the State Board of Education. There is no benefit from teaching and testing young people on outdated standards.”
OEA warned that failure to provide professional development, technology for computer-based testing and time for collaborative planning “threaten successful implementation of the Common Core initiative.”
“The failure of policy makers to fund and support local implementation with the technology and ongoing communication with parents and communities will create unnecessary challenges for school districts and their employees,” said Frost-Brooks.
Common Core has great potential, and the issues OEA has identified are problems with implementation and support, not problems with the standards themselves, Frost-Brooks said.
“Teachers, parents and community leaders all helped create the Common Core, using research, best practices, and their hopes for the next generation,” said Frost-Brooks. “If properly implemented, Common Core learning strategies offer a dynamic foundation for lifelong learning, empowering teachers to use a wider range of strategies and their professional judgment and giving students more time to master essential knowledge and skills.”
That ought to embolden some of the tea party conspiracy theorists now popping up all over the place opposing Common Core.