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Wednesday, May 25, 2016
State's test-prep efforts get an F
(Page 2 of 3)

School administrators and teachers across the state said that students were unprepared to meet those standards. No one, they said, had time to adequately prepare children, given that Common Core represents a wholesale overhaul of the state’s ELA and math curricula.

Teachers, who were trained under very different standards, said they themselves did not entirely understand Common Core. Now we see the results of the state’s rush to implement the standards. Across New York, the passing rate on the K-8 ELA and math exams hovered in the 30 percent range, prompting state and local officials, including Education Commissioner John King, to release a slew of statements in a vain attempt to quell parents’ furor. Their replies to anxious parents and students, many of whom say they are beginning to break under the weight of continuous high-stakes testing, were simply inadequate.

State officials are calling the results of this year’s exams a “baseline.” That is, they gave educators a sense of where students are, and where they need to go from here. Apparently they have a long way to go.

Sadly, the state did little this past year to help teachers and parents prepare for the new standards, beyond warning that they were coming, according to school administrators and teachers across the South Shore. The state set up engageny.org to help inform educators about the standards and what they can do to implement them. Beyond a litany of goals and objectives, however, there is little on the website to help educators achieve them. The state provides a library of short video clips of sample lessons that teachers have taught according to the new standards. But is this training?

And there was next to nothing for parents, who, we believe, should play a vital role in their children’s education. In the past, parents at least knew what state tests looked like. They had sample tests from past years that they could easily obtain from the Education Department’s website or from privately published study guides. This year there was nothing of the sort, only vague notions of what the new tests might look like.


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This generation of children must be able to feel confident enough to take the test and pass it. The parents need to be able to help them prepare for it. I would love to see what these tests look like. Copies of these tests should be available for teachers and parents to view so they have a better uderstanding of what the children need to prepare for. The teachers need to know what areas the kids need help in so they can prepare them for future testing. My next question is, why are we subjecting our kids to these tests, without a better understanding of what these test scores really mean or prove. Who saya our kids are failing if they don't pass these exams? What does the state know when it comes to children. The teachers have a better understanding then anyone.

Friday, August 16, 2013 | Report this

I have been an educator for over 30 years. Teaching has become dull and all I see are stressed out teachers and students. I am glad my own children are at the end of their school careers and I am ready to retire. The curriculum as I see it is moving too quickly for little brains to absorb. When kindergarteners don't have time to play, we are doing our children a great disservice. I also question the integrity of a test that students can opt out from. How is any of this helpful to our children and how does it affect the accountability of our teachers? I doubt there are educators making decisions on how to educate our children but I am certain professional testing companies are the only ones to benefit.

Friday, August 16, 2013 | Report this
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