Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Joel Klein: The Good News in Lower Test Scores. HUH? Plus NY State Ed Cwies Bitter Tears

Shock doctrine at work. 26 percent of students in third through eighth grade passed the state exams in English, and 30 percent passed in math.  Only 5% of students in Rochester passed. Statewide, only 31 percent of students passed the exams in reading and math..... Leonie Haimson
Is this the same Joel Klein who ran our schools for 10 years and was constantly taking bows for increased test scores and winning the praise of the mayor? He must have little respect for the public's memory or critical thinking skills. ... Loretta Prisco
The irony is that Joel Klein used to say every year that the NAEPs were not reliable since they didn’t show the same improvement in scores that the state tests did for NYC – during the test score inflation era.  Now he is claiming in the NYP that the new scores are to be trusted b/c they match the NAEPs! ... Leonie H.
Joel Klein 
Click here: The good news in lower test scores -
I would hate for people to think these ed deformers know not what they do. That they somehow goofed. Or that they allowed Bloomberg to be caught without clothes.

What they are doing is, after almost 15 years of ed deform failure starting in Chicago and here in NYC 11 years ago, is buying more time. They are not saying their deforms didn't work but that there were still too many obstacles -- mostly due to bad teachers and union obstructionism -- in the way. So now they are putting a system in place that will allow them to get rid of "bad" -- read, higher salaried -- teachers, close down more public schools and open up charters in their place. What will be their excuse in another decade if unions are gone? Which leads me to our pals at the local hangout at 52 Broadway, who I believe will never be gone, though with a reduced membership.

As the UFT withers away from the base, the  Unity people on top will maintain their little slice of power by offering themselves to the deformers as managers of the teachers to make sure things never get too far out of hand through militant action -- ie, controlling a group like MORE to constrain its growth for instance. Do they mind that tenured teachers get rooted out of the system? Not at all. The disappeared must be replaced by newbies at much lower salaries -- not only does the DOE get 2 for 1, so does the UFT -- 2 dues payers for one (think: collect $2000 a year in stead of $1000). A win-win for the deformers and the UFT.

More comments on the Change the Stakes listserve:
If I see the words "compete in a global economy" one more time I am going to throw up. Has anyone checked the global economy lately? Do they really want to be at the top of that heap? ... Ruth S.

Not to mention the student debt our college bound kindergarteners will be saddled with for life.....or is that the plan? .. Janine Sopp

These tests are not internationally benchmarked. And we do not know what the questions are.
The DOE's testing regime is akin to throwing darts blindfolded.

This idea comes up every year, but--perhaps we should challenge the mayoral candidates to ask to take the tests.... Edith B.

And NY State Ed issues some drivel. Here is Leonie's comment:
See especially talking points document , letter to parents, and press release w/ below quotes.  The PR battle begins. Interesting no supportive quote from Duncan or Walcott.  I don’t know about you, but I’m  really impressed by that quote from Kentucky!
Click below at your own risk of barfing.

“Too many students graduate from high school unprepared for the challenges of college and work. New York has raised the bar for students with the Common Core State Standards, challenging those students to develop a deeper understanding of subject matter, learn how to think critically, and apply what they are learning to the real world. The newly released assessment scores give us a fair and honest look at the work we have to do and reflect the hard truth that students are struggling to meet these higher goals. New York has done a significant amount of work to develop a vast body of resources and tools to help principals and teachers prepare to help their students and remains committed to working with all educators and students to meet these higher goals. I applaud New York for their leadership and ensuring that students are leaving high school better prepared to succeed." Chris Minnich, Executive Director, Council of Chief State School Officers

“We have worked with NYSED since 2009 to support the state's transition to the Common Core. New York has been a leader in identifying the shifts demanded by these higher standards. We know that not enough students in this country are on track for success in college and careers--assessments that measure the standards will show this. Students, families, and educators in NY should now have more clarity about the work that lies ahead to ensure that all students who graduate from schools in NY are college and career ready.” - Susan Pimentel and Jason Zimba, Founding Principals of Student Achievement Partners (Contributing Authors of the Common Core Standards)
“I congratulate Commissioner King and the people of New York for recognizing the importance of equipping their children for the future and preparing them to compete in a global economy,” said Kentucky Education Commissioner Terry Holliday. “New York has shown great leadership in raising the bar on student outcomes to the level of college- and career-readiness. I know, as has happened in Kentucky, New York educators, parents and communities will come together, stay the course and support students as they work toward mastering these more rigorous standards.”–Dr. Terry Holliday, Commissioner of Education, Kentucky Department of Education

“Experience gives us confidence. The Common Core standards represent an unprecedented shift in our expectations for schools and the students they teach. Students who meet these new expectations will be better prepared for the demands of the world they will inherit. Over the past year, teachers and school leaders worked very hard to change instruction to match the new standards. With more time and resources, our schools will refine their practices and enable more and more students to reach the standards and surpass them – as we have when standards have been raised in the past. Overwhelmingly, superintendents see the Common Core standards as a step toward raising the quality of education in our state.” – Robert J. Reidy, Jr., Ph.D., Executive Director, NYS Council of School Superintendents
“These test results reflect student achievement using the national Common Core standards and represent a starting point to help us better prepare students for college or the workforce. The challenge for all of us now is to use this information to inform instruction, target remediation efforts and improve teaching. School boards are committed to helping each student achieve greater academic success, measured by fair and accurate assessments.” - Timothy G.Kremer, Executive Director, New York State School Boards Association
“We've heard it said we're moving too fast to implement higher standards that reflect college and career readiness. That's wrong. Frankly, we're not moving fast enough. The 21st century economy is demanding the skills the Common Core Standards develop. It would be unfair to our students not to equip them with the knowledge they  need to succeed in the world. We need a workforce ready to fill the jobs in the new economy. It's clear from the these results we have a lot of work to do to prepare our students for their future, but the Common Core will help us get there. A workforce that is well-prepared is an essential element of the vibrant business climate that The Business Council and my fellow New York business leaders are striving to create.” - Heather C. Briccetti, Esq., president and CEO, The Business Council of New York State, Inc.

                    “Results on this year's grades 3-8 State English and math tests may suggest that the tests were tougher than in the past but we must recognize that they were designed to measure learning differently than in the past. We can't view a drop in scores as indicative of diminished student capability or ineffective instruction. The outcomes should instead provide a basis from which to build instruction and support for the new model -- to better inform both parents and teachers of where students are and what is needed to enhance their abilities to not only learn but to integrate and apply knowledge that will better prepare them for college and career.” - Lana Ajemian, President, NYS Parent Teachers Association

                    “We understand that graduating students college and career ready is essential to the economic future of our cities. In fact, the best economic development tool is a strong educational system. The Common Core Standards coupled with essential resources and supports provide a road map to a brighter tomorrow for our students, our cities, and our state. In this very difficult time of implementing new curricula and of transitioning to a new testing regime, we applaud the Commissioner’s mission to raise the level of learning for children in all schools throughout the state.”–Robert Biggerstaff, Executive Director, Conference for Small Cities

Superintendents and District Leaders
                    “These results show what we expected--we have a lot of work ahead as a State and district. In Syracuse, we know that we must continue to support our teachers with Common Core professional development, resources and tools. And we will use the new baseline set today to further refine supports for our students, placing them on the road to success. We must maintain high standards and expectations ensuring all of our students are prepared for college and careers. – Dr. Sharon Contreras, Superintendent of Schools, Syracuse City School District
                    “The results of this year’s assessments create a new baseline for measuring student achievement and progress. The question for educators and parents is not how theses scores compare to past assessments. It’s whether we have the instructional resources and supports in place to grow from this baseline rapidly. I am confident that we are creating a sense of urgency to implement the changes necessary to improve student achievement as we move forward, such as giving our teachers and students more time and support.” - said Dr. Bolgen Vargas, Superintendent of Schools for the Rochester City School District.
                    "The latest test scores are new benchmarks, based on a collaborative effort to ensure each child is, indeed, college ready. Educators should not look at the test scores as something negative; we should embrace them as a new starting point. The increased rigor of the Common Core, coupled with the introduction of the new standards, have had an impact on the scores. Before the assessments were given, we were all alerted -- parents and staff -- that the scores would be lower. But now we have a road map to help every student in Yonkers prepare for the future." - Bernard P. Pierorazio, Superintendent, Yonkers Public Schools
“Our staff members have adjusted our curriculum to better align with these new standards and will continue to do so based upon the assessment results. We are proud to have such a dedicated and excellent staff. Any decrease in student scores should not be interpreted as a decline in student learning or teacher performance. Instead, we view this as a new baseline for the skills students need to be successful after high school. Our society needs citizens well-versed in critical thinking and problem solving – which are stressed in the new standards. While these skill sets have always been incorporated into our curriculums, the changes we have made will better prepare our students for the ever-changing world that awaits them.” - Fayetteville-Manlius Central School District Superintendent Corliss Kaiser.
"We knew that our scores were going to look different. The common core is requiring students to learn differently because their future is different than the world we faced when we graduated from high school. This is a baseline for students and teachers. Our challenge is to have confidence in our teachers and support them as they continue to make the shift to these standards. This new baseline measure is not a reflection of our students learning less; in many instances they learned more and challenged themselves differently. our teachers have is a real sense of purpose, an ownership of the work, and a clear direction about what comes next. The modules on are providing our teachers with clarity about what is expected and they know what they need to do to move their students forward." – Adele Bovard, Superintendent of Schools, Webster Central School District
“Today is Day 1 in our journey to reach new learning standards for students, staff, parents and truly the community as a whole. We need our students to be career and college ready so they can access the bounty found in the 21st Century. As with any journey, you need a beginning point and the release of the scores today, which are steeped with Common Core Standards for the first time, represents the start of something that will lead to a better world of opportunities for the students of today and a richer world economically and culturally for society tomorrow.” – Neil O’Brein, Superintendent, Port Byron Central Schools
"The key point is to recognize that no one should be surprised or confused. The scores create a new baseline. This lets us know what we have to do moving forward. Our teachers have worked harder in the last 12 months than they ever have in their lives. These scores are hard to see after all of that hard work, but we have to understand that this is a marathon, not a sprint. We have to keep working towards our goal which is to prepare our kids for the world they're entering. I watched my staff work so hard this year. Everyone is showing up. Everyone wants to be here. This is a powerful time right now. Our teachers want to be successful at this. We are even working hard this summer so that we are ready for our kids when they return in the fall. This is going to be a good and important year for our students." – Mike Ford, Superintendent, Phelps-Clifton Springs Central School District
"We have been working to implement the Common Core and we can only grow from here. We were prepared for scores to be lower knowing that this is a new benchmark  year. As we approach the upcoming school year we will have more information in order to better prepare our teachers and students. Our teachers have been working hard and we know where we need to place our efforts." – Eva Demyen, Superintendent of Schools, Deer Park School District

“We must challenge our students differently than we have in the past. The Common Core represents a necessary and dramatic shift that strengthens both the call and the case for rigor. These standards focus our attention on learning targets that systematically integrate skills in reading, literacy, writing, and higher order thinking. I’m excited about the doors that will be opened by the new standards for my child and every student that has the good fortune of living in a state that made the decision to adopt them.” – Constance Evelyn, Superintendent, Auburn Enlarged School District
“My job is to support my teachers. We have teachers who are leaders in our district and they are helping us to understand what we need to do to get this done. We feel good about it. No one district can do this on its own and we have a strong partner in our BOCES. I feel good about what we are going to continue to accomplish. We are about moving forward and getting done what must get done.” – Carlos Sanchez, Director, Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment, Port Chester Public Schools

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Where can you find these test results?