It’s March Fourth.
March Forth for Education. Four years ago I participated in a March Fourth Walk with children and parents from Max’s public school to the Civic Center in San Francisco, where students, parents and teachers gathered to demand (ask?) the state to give money back to the public schools. It felt brilliant to be part of such a large group of public school participants and advocates making noise to stop the cuts to public education. We brought signs, noisemakers, water bottles and strollers. We got off work early, we yelled, walked, and chanted. We took pictures and we marched.
Every year that I have been a public school parent in California, I have worked my butt off raising money, trying to figure out what my son’s school needs, what the teachers need, what books need to be purchased, and figuring out how we parents can best put in our time, skills and resources to help schools.
“Those that make test scores and grades the heart of education hit their targets while entirely missing the point.” – Joe Bower
More on the Common Core!
This last week the California legislature voted to suspend standardized testing for all public school students for the 2013-14 year. (Here’s who voted for and against). This was based on the idea that we are transitioning from the California state standards to the Common Core standards. In this transitional year, many districts are spending their money on updating their technology, professional development and practice tests for the Common Core. Teachers, administrators and districts do not want to test students on the old standards while they are preparing students using the new standards. Testing kids on both would be a monumental task, stress students, teachers and schools, pull everyone in two directions at once, and stretch districts’ resources – all the while taking time away from actual teaching and learning.