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04 June 2014 @ 01:02 pm
Lies, lies, lies  
NPR Education is pleased to prvide us with a CCSS FAQ to answer questions and allay fears and address the misconceptions we have. I am not sure why they have decided to do this, but here is the link: http://www.npr.org/blogs/ed/2014/05/27/307755798/the-common-core-faq?utm_campaign=storyshare&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_medium=social. Now if they could kust adjust this page to be ACCURATE, that would be lovely.

The inaccuracies (okay, let's just call them lies because this is a new organization and should know the truth from the PR) occur in the first FAQ when we are told that educational experts helped write the new standards. If one can be deemed an "education expert" without ever having stepped foot in a classroom, then perhaps this could be true. However, expert means IMHO havintg some experience. The architects did not have classroom experience.

Moving on. Answers to why we needed CCSS range from the assertion that other countries do it to we needed it to end less rigorous programs to something about more competition in textbooks. First, CCSS did not invent rigor; it already existed. Second, other countries have different reasons for national standards. Also, Pearson is enjoying a lovely monopoly courtesy of CCSS. Did anyone do some research here?

Moving on. Where did CCSS come from? See if you can find any education experts there in that lovely graphic.

Moving on. There is a difference between a standard (a goal written by an "expert" who is not a teacher), the curriculum (written by an administrator not a teacher) and a lesson plan (here's where teachers come in). Check out the nifty worksheet: http://www.jumpstart.com/common/count-match. So, teachers are expert on worksheets and little else. Nice.

Moving on. In terms of Exemplar Texts, take a look at the chart, please. Robert Frost in second grade; instructions for adding insulation materials as a text; adult books in high school. Yes, not required, just EXEMPLAR. Please.

Now move on to Question 21: who is making money from CCSS? There is some brief information. What is missing is the price tag including bandwidth, computers, PD, tests, and all the other things each and every CCSS school must have if they do not already have them in place (and many if not most do NOT).

Nice work, NPRed. Lots of questions. Skewed answers that are misleading is not downright inaccurate. Insistence that it is the conservative groups who are doing most of the objecting. Ridiculing states and organizations who have changed positions (can we remember this part for when you have to change position as well?).

Disappointing. When I get the next phone call asking me to pledge $$$ to NPR, you can be assured I will have some answers ready as to why I am not giving a penny any longer.

P.S. Read the comments below the FAQ piece to see how much confusion still reigns.
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