At what point will the Wake County School Board finally acknowledge that Common Core is the root of most of the problems district students have?
Would a teacher survey that says, “only 50% believe that all students can meet grade level benchmarks given sufficient supports” do the trick?
According to News and Observer, teachers at 28 schools were given a ‘beliefs’ survey and half of them didn’t think their kids could reach do the grade level work. But some of the board won’t believe their lyin’ eyes.
The reaction from board member Jim Martin was not to listen to the teachers, but to nitpick the questions:
However, school board member Jim Martin questioned the wording of the questions, saying teachers could honestly believe not all of their students could reach grade level. He said the questions, intentionally or not, appear to be phrased in a way to blame the teachers for lacking belief that their students can do well.
“This puts it all on top of the teacher,” Martin said. “I’m frustrated with what seems to be being done with this belief survey in the real context of the classroom, the complexities of learning where the teacher has responsibility, the student has responsibility.”
So what’s the solution? Not a peep about Common Core and yet there is the need for more ‘support’, of course.
What is MTSS? The Wake County Schools site explains:
Multi-Tiered System of Supports, or MTSS, will help our teachers work together more efficiently, use data more effectively and approach their work more strategically. The overarching goal is to improve the quality of instruction that every single child receives.
They want to meet the needs of all students? But, isn’t Common Core supposed to address all students and be uniform? Why do we need yet another intervention program?
How does MTSS improve instruction?
By analyzing multiple data sets collected on your child – including behavioral data:
MTSS provides guidelines to more quickly identify both challenges and solutions. Timely data – including test scores, suspension rates, attendance and more – are used to help problem solve and identify the levels of supports needed for students.
And where do they get all that data? From PowerSchool probably.
Funny, I thought that actually interacting and trying concepts out with any given child might be a more direct path to ‘solutions’ than analyzing chunks of data.
Of note, most elementary parents (like me) in Wake county still do not have access to PowerSchool. We can’t see the system that MTSS likely pulls most of its data from. That means that Wake county is violating the FERPA rights of thousands of parents and the parents probably don’t even know it.
The district is using MTSS in 28 schools this year. 44 more will use it next school year and so on until the whole district is doing it.
MTSS Is Statewide
“NC MTSS is a multi-tiered framework, which promotes school improvement through engaging, research-based academic and behavioral practices. NC MTSS employs a systems approach using data-driven problem solving to maximize growth for all.”
According to the MTSS Instrument of Readiness document on the Wikispaces page, the vision of MTSS in NC is this (emphasis added):
“Every NC Pre K-12 public education system implements and sustains all components of a Multi-Tiered System of Support to ensure college and career readiness for all students.”
Again, isn’t Common Core supposed to be ensuring college and career readiness for all students right out of the box?
Weren’t we told it was far superior to all other standards and that it would allow all kids to learn the same thing?
Yes, it was and yes we were.
Unlike the messaging used to sell the standards to the public, Common Core cannot and will not work for all students.
MTSS is not new either. It’s predecessor is RTI (Response To Intervention).
But MTSS, unlike RTI, it is being used specifically to support Common Core, much like a person with a broken leg uses a crutch. MTSS is the crutch. Simply put, Common Core will never work without significant changes, adaptations and interventions.
The reality here is that Common Core is driving an entire ‘intervention’ industry in our schools now, and MTSS appears to be the intervention du jour for North Carolina.
I’ll have more details about MTSS. Stay tuned.