Sunday, January 17, 2016

BATs Legislative Team Weekly Update


BATs testify at the USDOE on Title 1 of ESSA - Look here for their testimony

Here is the entire testimony provided to USDOE this past Monday.
Jamy Brice Hyde 1:16:23
Julie Borst 55:00
Marla Kilfoyle 3:20:18
Melissa Love Light Tomlinson 4:55:32

CA BAT Sandy Goodwick is scheduled to speak in the California hearings on Tuesday, Jan. 19th and will be added to this post.  


Idaho legislators were treated to a presentation sponsored by Idaho Business for Education. The speakers were Tony Bennett and Eric Hanushek who are well known to BATs as promoters of school choice and VAM. Idaho BATs were encouraged to write to their legislators to ask that Idaho's superintendent of the year and Idaho's teacher of the year by invited to share their thoughts on education. Idaho Business for Education receives funding from the Albertson Foundation and is closely aligned with the Foundation for Excellence in Education.

IEA shares priorities with Senate Education Committee

Cuomo misrepresents reality of public education in New York State

High-stakes testing

"As it welcomed four new members Thursday [01/14/15] night, the [Northampton] School Committee also voted unanimously to support House Bill 340, a proposal before the state Legislature that outlines a three-year moratorium on tying standardized testing to graduation requirements, teacher evaluations and other associated accountability measures.

With its vote, Northampton joins several communities across the state that have taken a stand against high-stakes testing. Locally, the Amherst-Pelham Regional School Committee voted to support a moratorium in July, and the Greenfield School Committee did so in September.

Julie Spencer-Robinson, president of the Northampton Association of School Employees, voiced support for a moratorium during the public comment period, saying that relying too heavily on testing reduces the quality of education and undermines teachers’ creativity. Instead, she suggested the district support locally-developed assessments, which she said would give teachers more time to teach and students more time to learn.

Erin Mahon-Moore, a member of School Local Northampton, was one of two others to speak in support of the moratorium, saying high-stakes testing places “undue stress on students.”

School Committee members acknowledged that standardized testing provides teachers and district officials with useful information, but questioned the myriad ways results have been tied to things other than measuring student achievement.

Assessments should only be used to measure what they were designed to measure, Northampton Superintendent John Provost said. While he supports that aspect of the bill, Provost said he is worried it could affect state funding.

Ward 7 School Committee member Downey Meyer said that as a teacher he fears that eliminating testing as a graduation requirement could mean certain underperforming students end up being “passed through.” Still, he said he would support the moratorium, as the testing apparatus has “morphed into a monster.”

Ward 6 School Committee member Tom Baird pointed out that the vote would not do much to change the testing environment on its own, and encouraged members of the public to write their legislators."

Guns allowed on school grounds likely going nowhere

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