Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Is NYSED Admitting EngageNY Modules Are Crap?

Chris Cerrone tweeted the following this afternoon:


Megan Rogers of the Albany Business Review reports this:

The New York state education department wants teachers to revamp the state's online curriculum resources for the Common Core learning standards.

The state education department released a request for information on a proposal to create regional Common Core Institutes, where educators from school districts, BOCES or charter schools would work full-time to develop new online instructional materials for the 2015-16 academic year.

Educators would serve as Common Core Institute Fellows during the 2014-15 academic year. The teachers would work on one grade level in K-12 math or 9-12 English language arts.

The state has some curricular materials on EngageNY.org.

I've covered the EngageNY modules a bit here at Perdido Street School blog:

NYSED ELA Lesson Module - 17 Days On One Short Story

EngageNY Modules Make No Sense - An Emblem For Common Core As A Whole

The NYSED Common Core Modules - Meant To Dumb Down A Whole Generation Of Children 

The EngageNY modules have been widely mocked, ridiculed and criticized by parents and educators, students have complained about the drudgery of the lessons, so perhaps the flacks at SED have just gotten sick of defending the indefensible and are ready to throw even more cash into the Common Core curriculum development process.

This time they seem to want to hire actual teachers to do the development work, as opposed to ferreting out the work to private corporations to the tune of $12.9 million Race to the Top dollars.

Nonetheless, this is the kind of thing that could have been avoided if the autocrats at SED and the Board of Regents had slowed down the implementation process and taken the time to think through and collaborate on that process - including the curriculum development, the test development, the evaluation system for teachers, etc.

Instead everything got shoved through at once, a la Shock Doctrine-style, with top-down mandates coming from the self-described geniuses at SED and the Board of Regents, with an assist from another self-described genius in the governor's office.

So now SED seems to be admitting that they lit the $12.9 million they spent on EngageNY modules on fire, that the entire process needs to be redone, this time by actual teachers (though we'll see about that - I suspect the "teachers" SED looks to get for these Common Core Institutes will have to be Common Core-friendly ones, though this is a group that gets smaller and smaller by the week.)

This is just another sign of how the corporate education reform agenda as developed by Regents Chancellor Tisch, SED Commissioner King, Governor Cuomo and the Abany educrats/Gates Foundation employees is falling apart.

One of the fatal flaws of the Common Core/education reform agenda was the hurried way everything was shoved through, which ensured much of the reforms were going to be half-assed and badly done.

The autocrats and plutocrats running the system wanted everything shoved through at once so that no dissent would be encountered.

That worked initially, but now that hurried agenda implementation is helping to mobilize critics across the state to the reforms and getting much of the public on board as they see just what crap the EngageNY module material is.

We'll just have to see if SED and the Regents can salvage this mess by creating these Common Core Institutes (how Orwellian a name!) and developing new CCSS modules and resources for 2015-2016.

The problem for SED and the Regents is that the opposition to the CCSS reforms may be so broad and widespread by that time frame that even if the CCSS Institutes developed useful materials, the whole process may be so poisoned by what came beforehand that no one will dare to use any of it anyway.

17 comments:

  1. The other problem is that even more money will taken from classrooms to fund this.

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    1. More accurately, it's RttT money that won't reach the classroom. When the ed boards and pols were declaring we needed to make the RttT reforms so that we could win the RttT money, they sold it as more money for schools and classrooms. But the reality is, the state is still sitting on much of the RttT cash to use for these kinds of things. They never intended to spend any of that money on classrooms or schools - it was always meant to be spent systemically on "assessments," "data systems," "curricula" and the like.

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  2. I attended a workshop at a math conference two years ago with a wonderful NYSED representative as the speaker. It was 7 months into the first year of CCS implementation and no modules had been released. This representative suggested that implementation was being rushed by "those in charge". This representative also stated that the first math modules produced were never disseminated. Instead, they were returned to the vendor for revamping. It seems the vendor did not realize the modules would be used to teach students of ALL abilities.

    I wish I could say the modules were worth waiting for. Sure, within the hundreds of pages of material, there are some good ideas but, in general, the modules could have and should have been better!
    This disruptive change in education, a plan supported by Cuomo, King and Tisch, is turning out to be wasteful and expensive!

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    1. The rushing of all this will be their undoing. They thought they only had one chance to get all of their reforms through, so they shoved them through all at once. But as public sees what crap they pushed through (and they're seeing it already - will get worse over next few years as more becomes clear), this will undo a lot of what they shoved through all at once. I suspect APPR will go after court challenges undermine it, PARCC will never happen, inBloom already gone, and the CCSS tests and the EngageNY material already are under heavy assault from critics.

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  3. While this is good news in that in indicates that opposition to CCSS is having an effect, I'd urge teachers to have absolutely nothing to do with this: it's about getting them to participate in their own downfall, since it does nothing tho change the testing regime that Common Core is attempting to mask.

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    1. I completely agree. The name "Common Core Institute" tells you everything you need to know about what kind of CCSS-aligned material they're going to want. Not much different than the EngageNY modules, only this time, developed by "real" teachers so they can say teachers made these modules, not corporations.

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    2. Totally agree. We teachers are often guilty of contributing to our own downfall. We should not do that this time.

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  4. As a public school teacher, we had provided our e-mail some time ago to receive bulletins regarding the so-called "progress" that New York state was experiencing.

    I requested that my email address be removed...I could see the garbage and propoganda that was being spewed there by King's office.

    The modules are academically inappropriate, and reflect an intended dumbing down of our children. The people who created them should be held accountable, and those who have forced them on our youngest students should be investigated by an independent panel comprised of American citizens, and punished to the fullest extent, for heinous actions against our children, our state, and our nation.

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    1. Yeah, that stuff that comes out of SED is just garbage. All political propaganda trying to push their agenda.

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    2. Due to all of the Engage New York information being given free on the internet, it has swam it's way across our country to California where it takes root here and there.

      also a ed report funded new review on line thing (funded in part by Gates) is rating Eureka/Engage New York Math as the numero uno choice and this bogus review board has set up certain parameters to make the rubric vote on all products.

      This means we need to beware of the entity that created the entity in that it now propagates the use of the entity with purchases of a repackaged entity

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  5. Guess who should be at the head of the line?

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    1. King? Tisch? Cuomo? All three?

      I vote for all three - head of the line to go to prison.

      But we live in a fake democracy.

      Only poor people and people of color go to prison.

      The functionaries of the plutocracy, like King and Cuomo, and the plutocrats themselves, like Tisch, do NOT go to jail.

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  6. They did'nt even get the RtTT application right. Nysut had to rewrite it

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  7. our district has "adopted" and I use that term loosely, engageny for elementary math. As a parent I am beyond disappointed. The lessons take 2 hours to teach, what 5th grader can pay attention for 2 hours. The word problems are horribly put together, errors all over the place, kids have to make assumptions with the information given - who does that??? We have parents discussing how to do these problems because we can't tell what they are asking for. If we can't do it, how are our elementary kids going to figure it out. It is a joke and now we have many kids who used to love math, hate it and want nothing more to do with it. Thanks, thanks a lot!

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  8. Thank you New York, Engage Math, Eureka Math, is now being adopted by districts across the country. I am in Washington State and my district is struggling to implement the unfriendly kid materials, lacking or wrong answer keys, unrealistic time schedule, and lastly teacher manuals that half of the time don't make sense.

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  10. I'm embarrassed for New York State. Engageny's math modules were a horrible waste of taxpayer money. I don't think the company that created them even cared if they made sense (because they don't). Ka-CHING! The company got their money...and the state now insists people use the crap they wasted their money on. Idiots through and through!

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