Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Monday, March 30, 2015

Regents Chancellor Merryl Tisch Lashes Out Over Opt-Out

Mulgrew and the UFT declared victory over the budget agreement announced last night wherein Governor Cuomo pretty much got everything he wanted on education reform (and what he didn't get - like the charter cap increase - he will get later in the legislative session), but NYSUT President Karen Magee was a little less thrilled with the budget deal, saying that she and her union "are encouraging parents to opt-out" of the state tests..."we will be taking further steps to make parents aware of this.”

The doyenne of testing herself, Regents Chancellor Merryl Tisch, fired back quickly:

It used to be easy to ignore the most vulnerable students. Without assessments, it was easy to ignore the achievement gap for African-American and Latino students. Without an objective measure of their progress, it was easy to deny special education students and English Language Learners the extra resources they need. Without state tests, it was easy for a struggling 4th grader in a wealthy district to get lost. Obviously we still need to do more for those students, but now is not the time to put blinders back on. 

Gee, that's awfully close to calling opt-out supporters racists, isn't it?

That's how desperate the deformers have become to keep their House of Cards from toppling over.

High stakes testing and teacher evaluations tied to those tests is a civil right and if you're opposed to either of those, you're a racist.

One thing Cuomo hasn't banked on in this education reform fight - he can smear the teachers as lazy incompetents who don't want to be evaluated, he can pull his budget machinations and win the day for his deform agenda when he holds the state education aid hostage, but he can't force parents across this state to have their children sit for the state tests.

The battle now moves to the opt-out movement for the state tests - and if NYSUT actually does what Magee said they would do today and back it (and call me skeptical on that count), then we just may be able to starve NYSED and the Regents of much of their precious data and put a shiv into Cuomo's reform agenda anyway.

No wonder Tisch lashed out so quickly after Magee said NYSUT would back opting out of the state tests.

The Deform House of Cards can only stand so long as there's data at the base.

Get rid of the data and down come cards.

19 comments:

  1. Met with my principal today. She said she hopes every single parent opts their child out of the state tests. It's the only way to grab SED and the politicians by the throat and shake some sense into them.

    Think of it this way: When a crowd of a few thousand gathers in front of some dictator's palace they are laughed at and broken up by police thugs. But, when 500,000 turn out, the regime topples in short order, even entrenched regimes.

    If every parent opting their child out of the test, the state who fold in a matter of minutes.

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  2. This urban legend is now being perpetuated by Karen Magee?
    The notion that opt-outs will invalidate test score data has no basis in fact. What is the exact percent of refusals required by NYSED policy or state law to invalidate scores? No one can provide the answer because there is none. They will continue to use whatever percent of test takers they have to continue this unsubstantiated attack on our profession.

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    1. and the point is? that the uft is right to sit on its hands -- force them to validate test scores with whatever --

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    2. My point is that the opt-out movement will not change a thing because it is a day late and a dollar short. And I would love to be wrong.

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  3. The point is that once the percentage reaches a tipping point the sheer size will scare the living hell out of the politicians and hence SED will fold quickly. No government has ever stood up to mass opposition. No even totalitarian regimes. Small groups are ignored. Large ones cannot be.

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    1. Exactly what is that tipping point? Two years of outrage did nothing to stop Cuomo. How will a 20% opt-out (250,000) make any difference?

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    2. We need to read GUIDANCE ON NEW YORK STATE’S
      ANNUAL PROFESSIONAL PERFORMANCE REVIEW
      FOR TEACHERS AND PRINCIPALS
      TO IMPLEMENT EDUCATION LAW §3012-c AND THE COMMISSIONER’S REGULATIONS Pg 46-47

      It is not easy to understand with a great many abbreviations but the magic number seems to be 16. You need 16 scores to beget a valid rating. Someone can verify this for me, that would be great.

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    3. So if a third grade teacher in Scarsedale has 17 math students and two put out, her scores are then invalid? Do you really think that Cuomo, Tisch, and NYSED will fail to fire back at Magee with new prohibitive policies under the new statewide APPR?

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    4. then why are they so nervous about 3%? fact is 20% is a massive statement against testing, the lynchpin of ed deform. a tipping point in terms of real voters. signs of mass insurrection - a rebellion of parents -- think what it takes to opt out.

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  4. Well, we just disagree. If 250,000 students opted out I believe SED and the Board of Regents would be forced to fold by the politicians. The pressure has already led to the replacement of many Regents and the elected with several who are far from enamored with the current testing mania.

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    1. Don't get me wrong, I really hope you are right. I just don't see that big a refusal rate. Maybe 120,000 which is only 10%. Mulgrew is not on board with the mass opt-out plea by Magee. That's one third of the state right there. Paint me pessimistic and I will love to eat crow if the day comes.

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  5. Meryl Tisch is a mindless bureaucrat. Her ass is grass and the opt out movement is the lawn mower, as it were

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  6. Tisch represents a class of people who do not want to pay taxes to support the education of dark skinned children. For her to act like she is now very concerned about those children is pure BS. This is war--and right now the teachers are more credible than our governor and a hell of a lot more credible than Tuschie. We only have to worry about the witch for about ten more months--she is gone--the Wicked Witch is almost DEAD.

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  7. Tischy lost her enabler/protector when Shelly boy got hauled off. Old Bob Bennett got put out to pasture and Lil John King got disappeared to D.C. to refill Arne's grit dispensers. If they planned another Not Listening Tour she'd have to go by herself. What a difference a year makes huh Meryl. Maybe she can blow off some steam by boiling a few Regents Fellows. She bought them and they belong to her n'es pas?

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  8. teachers at the school level start pressuring up the line for the uft to back opt out - even start leafleting parents with their rights, etc - don't let district rep or any uft rep who comes to school off the hook. get your pta to invite someone from change the stakes.

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