First it was the clueless Wake County School Board stomping their foot and attacking parents who advocated for their child. Then it was the News and Observer’s equally clueless and insulting Editorial board.
Now it’s yet another “education non-profit” racing to protect a set of experimental and fundamentally flawed standards.
Last night over at the News and Observer, an article dropped about “education non-profit” WakeEd Partnership’s outrage that the NC Common Core Commission might actually be fulfilling their assigned task.
The News and Observer article linked to a newsletter entitled, ‘How To Advocate for Common Core‘. It was both a hilarious and annoying read at the same time.
Hilarious because WakeEd Partnership is clearly as clueless about Common Core as the Wake County School Board.
Annoying because much of what their newsletter contained was misinformation and, frankly, a fine example of hyperbolic bullying.
I find the faux outrage that follows in this newsletter hilarious given you haven’t bothered to give a crap until it looked like this commission might actually be performing the job given to them. The subtext here is, ‘how dare citizens actually exercise their rights by contacting their representation to act!?‘
Let’s dissect the newsletter, shall we?
“The North Carolina Academic Standards Review Commission is assessing the state’s reading and math standards. They’ve been working since January, and they have two more meetings to complete their work. The recommendations they make will go the State Board of Education.”
Uh , Guys? The Academic Standards Review Commission (ASRC) has been meeting for over a year. Their first meeting was in September, 2014. I didn’t see any of you there nor have I seen any WakeEd Partnership staff at a single meeting since. Come to think of it, I don’t believe WakeEd Partnership was at the legislative hearings back in 2013. I could be wrong, but I don’t recall their name coming up during that time.
“North Carolina’s current standards are based on the Common Core. WakeEd believes it is critical to maintain high standards that prepare students for career and college success and that are aligned with assessments that provide a way to compare our performance to other states.”
True and False.
Yes, our state uses Common Core right now.
No, Common Core is not ‘high standards’ nor is there any proof that it is – in fact, there is proof to the contrary in multiple years of stagnant and declining test scores, test opt outs, and the boom nationwide of parents yanking their kids out to do homeschooling. Not to mention the story behind the Common Core’s invalid validation committee.
No, there is no proof they prepare kids for ‘college and career success’. By the way, define ‘college and career success’ for us, will you, WakeEd Partnership?
No, the aligned assessments have not allowed for comparison in other states. We’ll get to that as we continue here. However, the key promise of Common Core was that type of comparison and the delivery of that promise has been an utter failure.
“The commission was asked to recommend modifications.”
WakeEd Partnership clearly hasn’t read SB 812 nor have they paid attention to its author, Sen. Jerry Tillman. Tillman has stated many times that the purpose of the bill was to repeal and replace Common Core via the formation of the Academic Standards Review Commission. While some line items may be similar, the goal was to make recommendations for a full overhaul which will make North Carolina’s standards unique and high reaching.
“Another concern: teachers shared a lack of alignment between the standards and assessments. One way the Commission can help is to call for high-quality aligned assessments. The recommendation can be made to the State Board of Education, and the State Board of Education will take the recommendation to the state legislature.
Why? Because in 2013, the legislature decreed that no assessments aligned to the common core could be purchased or implemented without General Assembly legislation to authorize the purchase.
That’s right. The General Assembly gets to decide when the State Board of Education can direct the Deparment of Public Instruction to implement assessments aligned to the standards currently in place.”
OH NOES… Yeah, and?
Looking out for the fiscal welfare of the state is a big part of their job? Clearly, the State Board of Ed and DPI weren’t doing that when they adopted Common Core and entered into an arguably illegal interstate compact via the associated testing consortia.
The legislature wisely cut off funding for the Smarter Balance Assessment Consortium (SBAC) just prior to the General Assembly’s Legislative Research Committee on Common Core. The SBAC test costs were triple what North Carolina currently was using.
I guess WakeEd Partnership is unaware that DPI did an SBAC pilot test in 2013? The cost of that pilot test or how it was paid for is still unknown. WakeEd Partnership are also seemingly unaware that the NC EOC and EOG for math and English are Common Core aligned? Are they also clueless that the ACT and the SAT are also Common Core aligned?
Going one step further on testing, if Common Core does what supporters claim it does, then logic dictates that kids should be knocking it out of the park on the old tests, right? Creating a new ‘aligned’ test is arguably a good idea, however it does ensure that testing companies will maintain their profit margins so long as the test is ‘rigorous’ enough.
Evidence has shown that both the SBAC test and sister test, the PARCC, are poorly written and scores have been atrocious for years. This has prompted states to dump these two consortia like hot potatoes. Heck, states are now even suing to get out of these consortia. Even North Carolina has altered it’s membership in the SBAC. Go figure.
By the way, from what is in WakeEd Partnership’s IRS 990’s — they appear to be more of a lobbyist group masquerading as a ‘education advocacy non-profit’.
Yay, another Common Core Potemkin Village!
For fiscal year ending June 2013, their 990 showed revenue of $724, 652 but expenditures of $739,060. That’s a net loss of $14,408. The prior year, they were down $63,765.
Where do they spend their money?
— Allison Backhouse (@ajbackhouse) September 9, 2014
Fun parting fact: Wake County Superintendent, Jim Merrill, is on their board of directors right next to SAS’s Common Core Cheerleader, Caroline McCullen. Convenient, right?
Stay Tuned – I’m not done with this big biz, Common Core loving “education non-profit”.