Tuesday, December 16, 2014

School Committee Meeting Public Comment Dec 15


This fall Eduction Commisioner Rier formed a panel to review the rigor and clarity of the Maine Learning Results which were adopted from the Common Core State Standards in 2011. 

The Panel was scheduled to work for 24 hours, but finished their charge in a third of that time.  Since then, two panel members have published criticism of the panel.  State school board member Heidi Sampson published her criticism back in September and David Lentini shared his letter to the governor  in November.  As recently as the 9th of this month, the Bangor Daily News published criticism on the Common Core standards which included the follow:

"The problems with the Common Core do not lie with [the] laudable goals.  They are founded in its underlying beliefs that American students are failing and that schools alone can overcome student deficiencies, that the purpose of formal education is to produce a work force rather than educated citizenry, and in its premise that a self appointed elite should be employed to make educational decisions for citizens who have neither elected nor employed them to do so."

When Common Core State Standards were developed, adopted, and recently reviewed, what role did Lewiston's school committee have?  How about our educators?  Or Lewiston citizens -- the parents, business owners, tax payers, voters?

There will be a public hearing regarding the commisioner's panel's work.  The date has not yet been released. 

I ask this committee to be informed on the standards and the review process.  I ask one or more members of this committee represent our community, attend the hearing, and make comment.  I ask this committee to write the commissioner, our legislatures, the governor, and state board of education about the standards and the panel's review.  I ask this committee to ask our administrators, teachers, and parents to do the same.  I ask this committee to lead and no longer let for profit companies and politicans mandate what is best for Lewiston students while Lewiston remains mute. 

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