ALBANY -- A deal is being negotiated to place a two-year moratorium on the use of student tests based on the Common Core for grade promotion in public schools.
New York City schools and a handful of districts statewide have used the standardized tests under Common Core for grades 3 through 8 as a factor in promoting students to the next grade. The deal would delay that use for two years, but would allow the tests to continue to be used in job evaluations of teachers and principals, said two state officials Tuesday night. The officials insisted on anonymity because of the sensitivity of the closed-door negotiations.
The agreement also would prohibit other school districts from choosing to use the standardized tests for grade promotion, the officials said.
Those details are the framework of a deal, the officials told Newsday, and an agreement is likely. The issue is being discussed in state budget negotiations between Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and Senate and Assembly leaders.
I'm glad to hear the Common Core tests won't be used as bludgeons against children.
But they're still going to be used as bludgeons against teachers, and thus whatever negative consequences to the school environment legislators were looking to mitigate by instituting the CCSS moratorium for two years won't actually happen because the high stakes remain for teachers.
Do legislators understand that when teachers' jobs are directly tied to these test scores, the pressure the state is exerting on educators gets put onto students too?
We know the governor either doesn't understand that or doesn't care.
But enough legislators reacted to the parent outrage over CCSS this past year that you would have thought they would have understood that the moratorium for high stakes around the CCSS has to be for both students and teachers to work.
Alas, the legislators seem not to understand that fact, or like Cuomo they don't care about it, or perhaps they're not willing to fight the governor over APPR.
In any case, APPR remains in effect for the CCSS tests and thus the pressure remains for teachers this April no matter the moratorium for children over the CCSS tests.
If I were the NYSUT, this is the sort of thing I would challenge in court to see if it can stand.
Can the state say tests won't count for kids but will count for teachers?
Of course, if the Weingarten/Mulgrew-backed NYSUT slate wins the NYSUT election next month, they may decide that they don't want to anger Sheriff Andy Cuomo and just leave things as they are.
I hope that doesn't happen.
APPR is super destructive for children as well as teachers and it must be dismantled.
The state unions should start by challenging the absurd notion that teachers can be evaluated using students' test scores from tests that don't count for students.