Opt-out penalty for schools considered Matthew Albright, The News Journal
Delaware is working on a new accountability system that will give parents a score to figure out how well their school is performing. The U.S. Department of Education requires such a system and insists it must include “consequences” for schools that don’t get at least 95 percent of their students to take the statewide exam.
Department of Education spokeswoman Alison May said there are “a range of possible consequences for low participation rates that would be acceptable to the U.S. DOE, and Acting Secretary [Steven] Godowsky has not yet chosen which recommendation he will propose to the State Board to approve for U.S. DOE consideration.”
So much for change at the Delaware Deapartment of Education! When a leader has to hind behind their Public Information Officer they are week-kneed leaders. As the “decision”, we all know Markell calls the shots!
State Rep. Kim Williams, who attended several of the last few working group meetings, says the state should just take the group’s advice.
“They are the experts,” Williams said. “You’re talking about years and years of educational experience here. I don’t understand why they wouldn’t just take the recommendation.”
Williams is one of several state lawmakers who want to see Delaware put up more resistance to federal mandates. In her mind, the working group’s recommendations “do the least damage” out of any of the options.
The federal mandates in this case are only applicable to the federal “grants” they are tied to. At the end of the day the feds gave Delaware the rope to hang itself. The ass-hats down in Dover legislative hall supported changing state laws and education “regulations” to mirror provisions in the Race to The Top applications / MOU. Our teachers unions including DSEA supported the Race to The Top MOU knowing Common Core and The Smarter Balanced Assessment were part of the deal. The unions worked in the shadows re: Parent Opt-out. The the agenda was railroad the 95% testing requirement to reduce the validity of the testing outcome. Remember DSTP? The unions cried, give us a growth model plan and we’ll be glad to be held accountable to “student growth”. Many the of state legislators are clueless cluster-fucks when it comes to education reform. So pretty much the union and cluster-fucks got in over their heads and we’re stuck with their mess.
10% of Delaware education dollars comes from federal funding and not all is tied to testing. How much of that 10% goes towards administrative cost, required testing cost, testing development cost, consultants and staff development? Where have Senator Carper, Senator Coons and Congressman Carney on these issue critically impacting Delaware? Carney wants to be governor! So what is his education plan? And do make note, only 6% of charter school funding comes from the feds. According to Charter School of Wilmington’s preliminary fy 2016 budget they receive only $147, 950.00 in federal aid. But what is the cost for their compliance to all the fucked up mandates?
Some of the items in Race to the Top, a $119 million federal grant Delaware won, also have drawn criticism, like teacher bonuses and performance evaluations tied to test scores.
“I think people are really tired of just being told ‘well, this is what the feds say we have to do,’ ” Williams said. “I think people want to see us start pushing back when we can.