Familiarize myself with the Common Core?
Well, Steven Katz finally offered this response to my letter.
Dear Ms. Boudet:
Thank you for writing and sharing with me a parent perspective regarding the administration of the New York State Testing Program’s Common Core assessments in English language arts and mathematics in Grades 3-8.
State testing is an important part of instruction in education programs. It provides an evaluation of student mastery of content and skills in various courses of study and helps shape future instruction.
With the exception of certain areas in which parental consent is required, such as Committee on Special Education (CSE) evaluations for students with disabilities and certain federally-funded surveys and analyses specified under the federal Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment (see 20 U.S.C. 1232h), there is no provision in statute or regulation allowing parents to opt their children out of State tests.
Each child’s school will decide how best to provide a sound educational environment for each child while the State tests are being administered. Schools do not have any obligation to provide an alternative location or activities for individual students while the tests are being administered.
As someone with a keen interest and concern for children’s education, I hope you will take the time to learn more about the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), on which the new State tests are based. The CCSS offer rigorous and researched-based learning benchmarks that help teachers guide students in their grade-by-grade progression toward college and careers readiness. To gain a better understanding of these standards that have been adopted by 45 states including New York please see the Common Core Toolkit for Parents and Families. (http://engageny.org/parent-and-family-resources) The Toolkit provides a collection of materials and resources that will help parents and families understand the Common Core itself and New York State Common Core implementation.
Again, thank you for writing and sharing with me a parent perspective on student participation in the new State assessments.
I can’t wait to write him back with my research-based reasons why the Common Core State Standards are a giant sell-out of public education. I can’t wait to tell him again that I don’t care what provisions there are or are not. I can’t wait to tell him all about the “importance” of his state tests. And I can’t wait to say once more that MY CHILDREN WILL NEVER EVER TAKE THESE TESTS, and there really isn’t a damn thing he can do about it.