Woo Hoo! Our State Board of Education Goes There . . .

[Update 3/14/17: OSSE’s response to all public comment is here, in a document dated March 14.]

and it’s all good:

“Today [Friday March 10], the DC State Board of Education [SBOE] provided the Office of the State Superintendent for Education (OSSE) with ten recommendations for changes to the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) draft accountability plan. . . . [The] recommendations reflect the consensus of the SBOE that the weight of test scores should be reduced and additional non-testing measures that encourage a well-rounded education be added. Additionally, they also recommend the establishment of task forces on School Climate/Well-Rounded Education and High School Growth Measures. These task forces would provide recommendations to SBOE and OSSE for inclusion in the accountability plan by April 2018.”

No response (yet) from OSSE–but the ESSA committee meeting I previously reported (see here) for tonight, March 13, has been cancelled.

This week, there are TWO related SBOE meetings that you will want to know about:

Tuesday March 14, 4 pm: This is a working session of the SBOE, in which OSSE will present its response to this document. If snow doesn’t intervene, this meeting will be held at 441 4th St. NW, room 1117.

Wednesday March 15, 5:30 pm: This is the regularly scheduled meeting of SBOE, at which you can testify about ESSA–and at which OSSE may present its response if the meeting on March 14 is cancelled. And, importantly, if you have not already, please submit your ESSA thoughts to SBOE in writing or by testifying at this meeting.

At the public meeting on ESSA that I attended last month, OSSE staff said that most teachers, principals, and parents wanted the test-heavy emphasis of its draft plan. Jaws dropped in that room.

In its announcement, however, the SBOE has made very clear that its proposed changes “reflect the views of SBOE members after receiving input through its community meeting series, presentations and discussions with PTA and Ward Education groups, experts, teachers, parents, school leaders and numerous direct conversations with residents.”

Now, you can take a poll, asking which version of ESSA reality is yours!

I can attest, as a DCPS parent, that SBOE’s version of what we DC citizens want from ESSA is a LOT closer to my experience than OSSE’s. I know no teacher, parent, or principal who wants emphasis on test results to the exclusion of other measures–and definitely not an 80% weight on tests.

Expect an interesting response from OSSE this week.

2 thoughts on “Woo Hoo! Our State Board of Education Goes There . . .

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