State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and Education Committee Chairman Catherine Nolan are trying to put the brakes on the state Ed Department's release of student data to outside vendor InBloom, saying it's just too risky right now.
The data dump of attendance, grades and test scores -- plus disciplinary records and disabilities -- is supposed to fuel the SED's EngageNY web portal as part of the Race To The Top funding program.
“After receiving moving and credible testimony at a recent hearing, the Assembly Majority has serious concerns about the potential flaws of the SED’s plan to share student data and their ability to protect student privacy. We feel compelled to question this plan and we strongly believe that student information should not be shared with InBloom at this time,” said Nolan, a Queens Democrat.
The Assembly Members who signed the letter stating their concerns to King said that many of the witnesses who testified in opposition to SED's inBloom plan provided "credible" and "moving" testimony.
They said this summed up the overall feeling they were left about SED's plans:
One witness, Pleasantville Superintendent Mary Fox Alter, summed up these concerns in her submitted testimony:
“The promise of digital personalized learning that uses individual data points on a child to plan digital learning solutions is dangerous. We cannot micromanage the learning needs of students or allow isolated data elements to be interpreted through a computer game, smartphone app or educational software to design learning. Students are human beings with individual needs, characteristics and learning trajectories.”
I would add that Common Core and Danielson also, in many ways, force micromanaging the learning needs of students and force a one-size-fits-all education onto human beings with individual needs, characteristics and learning trajectories.
That Silver and Nolan acknowledge this about inBloom is a good thing, however.
Just six months ago, Silver was telling critics of inBloom that there was nothing they could do to derail the state's inBloom plans.
Sounds like the furor around inBloom has changed that.
Still no Sheriff Andy sighting on any of this, however.
Wonder when he'll finally realize the DFER money he took to help implement inBloom isn't worth the political hassle?