Category Archives: Call to Action

Questions Every Public School Parent Should Be Asking Now

School has been in session for weeks in some areas, and about to begin in others. Parents are frustrated about the onslaught of testing that is ALREADY bearing down on some children. The tests are coming more frequently, and counting for more than ever. The measures necessary to accommodate testing have grown ridiculous, stealing irreplaceable instruction time from our children and scarce resources from their schools.  The 2014-2015 OCPS Assessment Calendar is a graphic example of over-testing.

School districts tout the need for teacher accountability. It’s time to flip this script on false accountability.

Parents must demand real accountability from our school leadership. NOW, not later, NOW is the time to get your school administrators thinking about the reasoning, or the lack thereof, behind the policies they uphold.

CALL TO ACTION:
Here is a list of thought-provoking questions for you to present. You may be surprised by some of the answers you receive. You might surprise them into realizing that they haven’t considered some of these questions themselves. Send your questions by e-mail. We would appreciate it if you would share your school’s responses in the comments below.

 

   Reporters take notice

Every public school parent should be asking these questions now… and you should demand REAL answers.

—> For principals:
1. How many standardized tests does my child have to take this year?
2. Where do these tests originate?
3. What is the specific academic purpose for each one?
4. How will these tests affect my child’s academic future or standing?
5. For each test, does the teacher see individual student results and have a chance to adjust individual instruction to help each student?
6. Who sees the scores, where will they be recorded, and for what purpose?
7. Do the scores become part of my child’s record?
8. Who in the district instructed you to give these tests?
9. How much time does the administration of each test take?
10. What training was provided to staff and how much time did that encompass?
11. Explain how costs for each test are used in a way that is in the best interest of your students.
12. How many staff are being taken away from teaching or counseling duties to administer each test?

—> For school superintendents:
1. Identify by name and frequency each standardized test your district requires in each grade.
2. Explain where these tests originate and, for each, explain its specific academic purpose and the year it started.

—> For school board attorneys:
1. Explain your district’s policy on opting out of/refusing standardized tests and cite its legal foundation.

—> For school board members:
1. How do you view the academic purposes for standardized testing?
2. Are you familiar with all the standardized tests your district requires, and their academic purposes?
3. Are you willing to initiate a parent/teacher review of the use of testing in your district?
4. Is this test mandated by the state or is this a district choice?
5. What are the costs associated with this test per student and to the district per grade level?
6. Will you provide the district’s opt-out policy to all parents in writing?

—> Tweetable link: http://bit.ly/1rdxUhQ

These questions were written with the help of a current teacher, who wishes to remain anonymous and with retired, Nationally Board Certified Teacher and journalist, Mike Archer, who was featured in Anthony Cody’s: Florida Teacher: “I was among those who reviewed Common Core in 2009.”

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CALL TO ACTION

CALL TO ACTION
Parents united for ALL children!!!

There is a confluence of significant events happening in Florida and throughout the country now.  In the last few weeks alone: 

  1. The documentary “Standardized” continues to be shown nationwide and has been opening the eyes of parents and emboldening teachers to speak truth to power.  Testing season is in full gear and parents are on high alert as children are stressed beyond belief, as they are burdened with the adult responsibilities of teachers’ evaluations, school grades and school funding.
  2. Social networks have exploded with the tragic story of Ethan Rediske. Public debate about the issues faced by his family before, when and since he died – has taken off like wildfire.  Other states are now calling for their own Ethan Laws.
  3. Beyond the injustice and abuse heaped upon severely disabled children, the mandated tests not only detracted from the quality, and possibly even the length of Ethan’s remaining life, the tests continue to decimate the quality of education for all children by virtue of the high stakes attached to testing.  The justifiable outrage of parents is growing every day, nearing critical mass.
  4. We are entering the 2014 legislative session and legislators have come out boldly in support of true reforms to preserve public education.  Full transformation may have to wait.  We’ll take this… for now.

Parents everywhere are poised to act and we need your help to enlist their support. While we wish that HB 895: The Ethan Rediske Act included broad parental rights to opt out, many experts have said that this is our best chance to open the door and we cannot squander this opportunity to wait for one more year.

On the front lines – We will continue to opt out of testing as an act of civil disobedience and as a moral stand against the destruction of genuine teaching and learning in public schools today.

There are significant Florida legislative actions pending NOW that affect YOUR CHILD.

Public School Curricular Standards & Assessments – SB 1316

Public School Curricular Standards & Assessments – HB 25

Ethan Rediske Act – HB 895

Ethan Rediske Act – SB 1446

Education Performance Accountability – SB 1368

Education Performance Accountability – HB 1187

We urge you in the strongest way possible to write your Representatives and Legislators TODAY.

Insist that your legislators stop this insanity against ALL children.

Let them know how the current policies affect YOUR child.

Tell them you want these bills enacted for ALL children’s benefit and protection.

Parents of every political persuasion are standing together for ALL children.

PLEASE CLICK: >>>  ACTION PAGE <<< AND TAKE PART IN

THE BIGGEST ACT OF PARENT EMPOWERMENT IN FLORIDA THIS YEAR.

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We’ve made it EASY for you!
Your voice counts, but only if it’s heard!

DO IT!!  And share.

Thank you!


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