Friday, November 15, 2013

Common Core Standards: Ten Colossal Errors - Living in Dialogue - Education Week Teacher

Common Core Standards: Ten Colossal Errors - Living in Dialogue - Education Week Teacher:

Common Core Standards: Ten Colossal Errors

A recent book described the "Reign of Errors" we have lived through in the name of education reform. I am afraid that the Common Core continues many of these errors, and makes some new ones as well. 
The Business Roundtable announced last month that its #1 priority is the full adoption and implementation of the Common Core standards. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is likewise making a full-court press to advance the Common Core. Major corporations have taken out full-page ads to insist that the Common Core must be adopted. Many leading figures in the Republican party, like Jeb Bush, have led the charge for Common Core, as have entrepreneurs like Joel Klein. And the project has become a centerpiece for President Obama's Department of Education.
Yet in New York, the first large state to implement the tests associated with the new standards, students, parents and principals are expressing grave concerns about the realities of the Common Core. Common Core proponents like Arne Duncan have been quick to ridicule critics as misinformed ideologues or delusional paranoiacs.   Defenders of the Common Core like Duncan and Commissioner John King in New York insist that only members of the Tea Party oppose the Common Core. In spite of this, the opposition is growing, and as more states begin to follow New York's lead, resistance is sure to grow.
With this essay, I want to draw together the central concerns I have about the project. I am not reflexively against any and all standards. Appropriate standards, tied to subject matter, allow 

Statewide Special Education Task Force - State Board of Education (CA Dept of Education)

Statewide Special Education Task Force - State Board of Education (CA Dept of Education):

Statewide Special Education Task Force




Examines California's complex systems for serving students with disabilities and forward recommendations to the State Board of Education, the Commission on Teacher Credentialing, and the California Department of Education.
  • Carl Cohn
    Co-Chair, Special Education Task Force
     
  • Fred Weintraub
    Co-Chair, Special Education Task Force
     
  • Maureen O’Leary Burness
    Co-Executive Director, Special Education Task Force
    916-698-6371
    moburness@gmail.com
     
  • Vicki L. Barber
    Co-Executive Director, Special Education Task Force
    916-947-6165
    vbarber@edcoe.org

Transforming Education to Improve Outcomes for Students with Disabilities

During the past decade, the reform movements toward greater accountability have highlighted the achievement gap that exists among students based on race/ethnicity, family income, language ability, and disability. While progress has been made to address the inequities evidenced in our educational outcomes, students with disabilities remain among the lowest performing subgroup in California and implementation of Common Core State Standards (CCSS) could further exacerbate the differences that exist.
California’s current policies, including funding, credentialing, and a range of service delivery options, tend to “bolt on” special education to general education. While there are certainly examples throughout the state of well-integrated models of supports, these are the exceptions rather the norm. Our prevailing model has made it acceptable, and in some instances seem desirable, to isolate special education as a unique and separate system that parallels general education. This approach defies current research, which suggests that inclusive practices, integrated systems, and coherence are essential to provide high-quality, cost-effective special education programs within (rather than apart from) a well-articulated system of education. Transforming our understanding of special education from being a place where students go to receive more or different services, to a viewpoint that includes special education services as one of many programs of support under the umbrella of general education, requires transforming the policies California has in place that serve as direction, incentives, and supports for local implementation action.
Funded by the Schwab Foundation and the Stuart Foundation, a new statewide Task Force has been formed to examine California's complex systems for serving students with disabilities and forward recommendations to the State Board of Education, the Commission on Teacher Credentialing, and the California Department of Education for consideration. The following overarching questions will guide the work of the task force:
  1. What is the state’s vision/mission for students with disabilities? Once articulated, how do we communicate and implement the state’s vision/mission on a broad scale? What systems of teacher training, school funding, and accountability are needed to ensure that all students receive a high-quality education that is appropriate to their needs and effective in supporting their learning?
     
  2. With implementation of Common Core, how do we ensure access to and success in the CCSS -- and in other core academic subjects -- for students with disabilities, beginning with their earliest years in the educational system? In addition, how do we ensure all students are appropriately included in our new assessment system? 
     
  3. What types of changes in teacher preparation and credentialing are necessary to ensure all teachers are prepared to meet the array of learning needs of their students in the least restrictive environment?
     
  4. How should special education services be funded and organized? Specifically, with the new Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF), how do we/should we account for students who carry more than one label/weight in the LCFF who are also students with disabilities? What strategies would most support effective service delivery options?
     
  5. What are current policy barriers to implementation of more inclusive school practices -- such as MTSS, RTI, and RTII -- and how can these be overcome?
The Task Force membership includes parents, teachers, school and district administrators, university professors, members of the policy community and other stakeholder groups, and will be co-chaired by Dr. Carl Cohn and Mr. Fred Weintraub. Dr. Cohn is the former Superintendent of the Long Beach Unified School District and a current member of the State Board of Education. After his retirement as a senior administrator for the Washington, D.C. based Council for Exceptional Children, Mr. Weintraub provided consulting services, including training, policy analysis and research studies on special education policies and procedures for school districts. He currently serves as the Federal Court Appointed Independent Monitor for Los Angeles Unified School District.
Two seasoned California educators with substantial background and experience in special education, Vicki Barber and Maureen Burness, are co-directing this initiative. Dr. Barber recently retired as the Superintendent of Schools for El Dorado County, and Ms. Burness recently retired as the Assistant Superintendent for Student Support Services with the Folsom Cordova Unified School District. Both Barber and Burness bring years of experience working in the K-12 sector in support of equitable student access to high quality instruction. Under their Direction, the Task Force will complete its work over the course of the next year and release a report with policy recommendations in the late Fall, of 2014.
For more information:
  • Vicki Barber, Co-Executive Director 
    Special Education Task Force 
    vbarber@edcoe.org
     
  • Maureen Burness, Co-Executive Director 
    Special Education Task Force 
    moburness@gmail.com
     
  • Loriann Villanis, Executive Assistant 
    San Mateo County Office of Education 
    lvillanis@smcoe.org

Questions: State Board of Education | 916-319-0827 

White House backtracks on changes to No Child Left Behind | Al Jazeera America

White House backtracks on changes to No Child Left Behind | Al Jazeera America:

White House backtracks on changes to No Child Left Behind

    
November 15, 2013  3:11PM ET
States will not have to meet October 2015 deadline to show low-income students are not taught by bad teachers





The Department of Education has abandoned a three-month-old plan that would have forced schools exempt from the federal No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act to prove by October 2015 that their poor and minority students are not disproportionately taught by the lowest-performing teachers.
In a letter Thursday, Assistant Secretary of Education Deborah Delisle told state schools chiefs that the Department of Education decided to amend the waiver extension process for any state seeking an exemption from the law, rolling back the requirements aimed to ensure equal access to the best teachers.
States will still be required to evaluate the effectiveness of each school based on results from standardized test scores, rewarding high-scoring schools and penalizing schools that do not meet the mark ­­— but without a firm timeline set, which critics say enables schools to ignore NCLB’s requirements.
The change reverses a deadline set by the department just three months ago.
Delisle said the decision to drop the deadline comes after “input from a variety of stakeholders,” but doesn’t specify what the input was or who the stakeholders were.
Education advocates, however, say the Obama administration is effectively turning its back on a 

Nite Cap 11-15-13 #BATsACT #RealEdTalk #EDCHAT #P2


James Baldwin said it best: 

"For these are all our children, and we will profit by or pay for whatever they become."


A BIG EDUCATION APE NITE CAP

 mark as read

Design Lessons for Students, not Standards | The Classroom Sooth
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solidaridad: If you suspect that CCSS perpetuates what bell hooks terms 'white supremacist capitalist patriarchy,' you're right!
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Special Late Nite Cap UPDATE 11-14-13 #BATsACT #RealEdTalk #EDCHAT #P2
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Nite Cap 11-14-13 #BATsACT #RealEdTalk #EDCHAT #P2
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