Saturday, February 08, 2014

Andy Cuomo's Three-Ring Common Core Circus

Intrepid Reality-Based Educator has the rundown on Governor Andy's Common Core panel.  I hear good things about teacher Todd Hathaway, who may perhaps counter the other teacher, E4E's Nick Lawrence. Presumably Lawrence supports whatever E4E's corporate overlords see fit. As someone who deals with real live teachers every day of my life, as someone who knows no teacher who supports E4E or its reprehensible policies, I find it outrageous that they get equal representation to that of real working teachers.

And yes, I know that Lawrence may be a working teacher but there is no way on God's green earth that his policies represent those of any more than a tiny fraction of teachers, particularly those of us encumbered with conscience. There are bright spots on the panel, like Linda Darling-Hammond, yet even she does not oppose Common Core. There is also Cathy Nolan, who was brilliant at the Grover Cleveland High School hearing, but who, alas, does not oppose Common Core.

I have not the foggiest notion how or why Michelle Rhee's brainchild, TNTP,  or even IBM represent the people of New York. I will grant they may represent, like E4E, the fine folks who funnel much-needed cash toward Andrew Cuomo's relentless ambition/ campaign funds. Senator John Flanagan, of course, is the man who sponsored legislation, on behalf of Emperor Bloomberg, to destroy seniority rights for NYC teachers only. (Perish forbid there should be blowback from the district the fine Senator actually represents.) It's acutely bizarre to see UFT boast of his inclusion on Cuomo's panel.

What can we expect from this panel? Will the one independently-minded educator be able to sway everyone else? Will they support a two-year moratorium on results from high-stakes testing, as some on the panel already do? And even if that comes to pass, how will that help parents with young children facing developmentally inappropriate tasks? Will there be any move to stop the idiocy from buffoons like Arne Duncan, who can't wait to slime suburban public schools and open up privatization opportunities for his BFFs?

And even if there is a two-year moratorium on teachers being judged by junk science, how have we determined that 2016 is a good year to initiate junk science evaluations? Isn't education something that ought to be based on reality, as opposed to the most expedient manner of enriching Eva Moskowitz? Isn't the optimal percentage of junk science in education precisely zero?

Personally, I find it borderline incredible I even need to discuss such things.
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