Diane Ravitch, the outspoken education historian, policy analyst and author, called on educators across Long Island Tuesday to boycott Common Core-related curricula and refuse to administer state tests as an act of defiance against the state and federal governments.
"Your community is your boss, and you do what's best for children," said Ravitch, speaking at a Hauppauge meeting that drew about 175 school superintendents and administrators from Suffolk and Nassau counties.
"Do not take the Common Core tests. Stop the testing," said Ravitch, of Southold, who wrote the critically acclaimed "Reign of Error," which defends the American education system and criticizes privatization moves as a drain on public schools. "Neither teachers or students are prepared for these tests. Stand together and there will be no punishment."
School officials did not commit to a boycott, but said they will keep pressure on the state regarding the reforms.
"I don't know if it would fly here, but there are appropriate moments for civil disobedience," said Roberta Gerold, president of the Suffolk County School Superintendents Association and superintendent of the Middle Country school district. "I would really have to think about it. I would love us to have the courage."
Because of the rising of the parents in opposition to the SED/Regents reform agenda all over this state, Sheriff Andy Cuomo is making believe like he never heard of the Common Core before John King and Merryl Tisch brought it to his attention, legislators from Long Island, Westchester and upstate are calling for changes to the testing regime and the Common Core mandates, some are calling for John King to resign or be fired.
If ever there was a time when concerted civil disobedience over the insane Common Core mandates, testing, teacher evaluations and data collection could be possible, it would be about now.
It's not something to take lightly, of course:
Michael Mensch, chief operating officer of Western Suffolk BOCES, said he believes a boycott could occur -- but only if educators had full support of school boards and their communities.
These are interesting times we are living in.
If I said to you a year ago that Cuomo would be running from his education reform agenda, King would be described by Newsday as the "besieged" state commissioner, politicians from up and downstate would be calling for King to resign and the Regents to reverse their reform agenda and parents all over the state would be up in arms over the reforms, would you have believed it?