Wednesday, April 20, 2016

#aPARCCalypse aka PARCC Bombed in NJ

In New Jersey today, it's a bright, cool Spring day. The sun is shining. Our kids are in count down mode to the end of the year. And, it's "testing season." Yes, the testing window is so bloody long, we've named it. 

Early this morning, many students in the state were getting ready to take the PARCC. Lo and behold, no one could log on. Parents in districts all over the state started getting texts and emails from school announcing that no testing would happen today. 

Bob Braun has put it best today: 
BREAKING--The PARCC collapse. After bullying parents and children into accepting the PEARSON testing regime, state Education Commissioner David Hespe has the chutzpah to call the testing company's screw-up "unacceptable"? The NJEA calls it "a disruption atop a disruption." If children were denied their regular schedules because of a teachers' strike, judges would be tripping over each other to issue injunctions because of the disruption caused by job actions. How about an injunction against the denial of a thorough and efficient education caused by the devotion of time and resources to the business of profit-making test companies?

I've documented some of the bullying here. Commissioner Hespe all but blew off the level of screwed-up-ness of today. Are we getting back from Pearson the money spent on substitute teachers today? Do parents even realize that districts have to do this in order for both classes and proctors to cover all students? 

But, what I really want to know is, what is it going to take to end it? What will it take for our state legislators to finally understand that this is a colossal mistake? That, unfortunately, due to ridiculous pressure from NJDOE, our children need to be protected from the people we have trusted to educate them? What will it take for our governor-appointed State Board of Education to start acting like they are there for our children, not to be a rubber stamp to the NJDOE? 

What will it take for parents and teachers to finally speak up and say, "enough"?

Fortunately, there's an opportunity to do that very soon. On May 4th, the NJ State Board of Education is holding their monthly meeting and it's one of those rare times when public comment it allowed. If there was ever time they needed to hear public comment, it's now. Here's the link to register. I look forward to seeing you there.;recid=24515

Edited to add my friend, Dan Masi's epic pic: 

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