What Happens when a Parent Asks About Common Core at an Informational Meeting?
A parent concerned about Common Core attended her school’s “informational meeting” at which she thought answers would be given to her questions about:
- P-20 pipeline and data collection
- Kindergarten readiness
- The 85/15% mandates on standards allowed by the consortia
Here’s her report:
SO MAD. I went to an ‘informational meeting’ in MY school district tonight. Got there and they had tables with benches. At each table were at least two people from the district. And the tables all had differing levels of ed as their focus: elementary, middle, highschool and general information.
I started off at elementary and asked about prenatal through 20. *crickets* They had no clue what I was talking about and told me that general information should be able to answer that. So I tried asking about the Kindergarten Readiness Assessment. No dice.
As the teachers I was talking with were out of answers I went to general information table. Guess who is sitting there? Oh wow, it’s my boss from the curriculum advisory committee. This is going to be fun. I bravely ask my P20 questions anyway, he didn’t answer (I say ‘didn’t’ rather than’ wouldn’t’ because I found out by tripping him up on lies that he knew more than he was letting on later in the conversation.). Apparently stumped, we moved onto to a new topic. 85%/15%. He told me (another lie) that he didn’t know what that was. At that moment the other district lady who was sitting there stood up and told us she needed to rotate to another table. After she left and as I continued to ‘educate’ him another lady sat down. And miracle of miracles, if she wasn’t the resident expert of 85/15 facts! She and I went head to head with our arsenal of talking points about the standards. At one point I snickered out loud and my ‘boss’ pointedly asked me “Why did you laugh?” in FRONT OF EVERYONE at the table. I told him because what she said was funny. Then he proceeds to inform everyone at the table that he is the manager of the table and now we need to lay down ground rules for behavior. We needed to respect each other’s opinions and not laugh. Thoroughly humiliated by now I am starting to get REALLY TICKED. So I ask about what happens when the kids fail the new test. Such as what happened in NY. I told her that I had a VERY hard time believing that NY children were doing that poorly on the assessment because they lacked the level of intelligence necessary to pass it. She then asked me “Was it PARCC or SBAC?” I said “Does it matter? The standards are national so the test is the same.” She then proceeded to inform me that SBAC is more ‘nuanced’ (her exact wording) than PARCC. “Oh you mean more rigorous?” said I. Yes. (So in other words all of you in PARCC states are taking the dumber test according to my district.) At that point it was obvious I was getting no where and by this time she had tore into my hide good. She was so hostile. And I told the table ‘manager’ so, to which the expert on all things SBAC said “Oh I wasn’t trying to be hostile…blahblahblah.” I said “I guess I am not going to get answers tonight. So thanks for your time. And I left twenty minutes after I arrived.
My district is flat out lying to parents. And it makes me MAD. They holding meetings so they can brainwash the parents into WANTING this for their kids.
It is so evil. I am so heartbroken over where our nation has been taken. Freedom is rapidly diminishing. Oh I forgot to add that at one point I asked him what the informational text for Kinder was going to be. He told me “There are CCS exemplars” to which I replied “I know” and he said “Then I don’t have to answer your question.” Is that how a PARENT is treated by a district employee?!?!
I feel for this mother. I have been to meetings in my district that are held like hers: staffed mainly with district employees and if parents have a differing opinion or question the district doesn’t want to answer, the table ‘manager’ disregards the question or ridicules the parent. The last time I went to a curriculum meeting and tried to ask questions about CCSS, the terse answer was ‘well, we’ve adopted it so that’s that. We’re not going to talk about it anymore’. Well, okay then. That was a waste of my time in my district’s informational meeting to try and determine how this ‘transformation of education’ was being implemented in the district and if standards that won’t make kids ready for 4 year universities was a valid goal for the students.
I decided not to go back and waste my time in these delphied meetings when a 3rd grade teacher crowed that ‘kids don’t need to know multiplication facts anymore. That’s what calculators are for’. Another parent looked dumbfounded and before I knew it, I said ‘batteries die and calculators break. How will the student know how to solve a math problem if he/she can’t do basic math facts?’
Parents, the example from the mom on Facebook and mine in Missouri are probably not that uncommon. It is time to take your kids out of school and protest this shameful way they are treating adults and educating kids. Administrator/educator arrogance is inexcusable and standards that are “the floor” will not make our kids exceptional.
Don’t settle for this. Don’t allowed yourself to be Delphied. Don’t give your time or your children to these people.