Calling the Common Core curriculum “a mistake,” Rep. Chris Gibson, R-Kinderhook, called on Gov. Andrew Cuomo Tuesday to “start over” and to bring parents, teachers and administrators into the discussion.
“It’s disappointing that the governor needed a task force to find out what parents, teachers and administrators have been saying all along — that Common Core has been a mistake,” the congressman said in an interview from Washington.
“We should roll this back and start over,” added Gibson, who has indicated he is planning to mount a campaign for statewide office in 2018, the year the two-term Cuomo faces re-election.
Cuomo has since hit the brakes on his drive to use the test scores to rate teachers, and last week a Cuomo-appointed task force set up to review Common Core recommended that the state adopt its own curriculum standards. It also urged that the student test scores not be used in teacher evaluations until the 2019-2020 school year.
Gibson questioned whether Cuomo’s embrace of the task force recommendations is sincere.
“He is using words suggesting he is listening now but we’re going to have to watch him closely,” the congressman said.
Close watch of Cuomo and the Board of Regents shows how they're double dealing with the "de-coupling" of test scores from the APPR teacher evaluation system, shifting part of the test component from "state" tests to "local" tests that may, in fact, be "state" tests (see here and here.)
So indeed, watching Cuomo closely as he "fixes" the Common Core problem in New York is warranted.
We know that his Common Core task force recommended little instructional shift from the Core, more of a renaming of the Core than a changing of the Core, even as they recommended developing "new standards."
As Kate Taylor reported in the NY Times in her piece on the task force recommendations:
It is unclear how different the new standards will be from the Common Core. The task force’s report calls for enlisting educators and parents to help create them, and it recommends modifying the standards for kindergarten, first grade and second grade so that they are more age-appropriate. But it says little about the standards in the upper grades, in which students take state tests, and it says that, generally, the new standards should “maintain the key instructional shifts set forth in the Common Core.”
Cuomo said he wanted a "total reboot" of Common Core and education policy when he first announced the creation of his task force, but essentially what we're getting with both Common Core and the test score component in the APPR teacher evaluation system is a little tweaking at the edges so that they can say "Everything's changed!" but in practicality, nothing really has.
Somebody on twitter said last night, you can tell when Cuomo's lying or deceiving you because he's talking.
That's pretty much what we've gotten from him in his "total reboot" of education policy - lies and deceptions, along with a couple of misdirections.
So Gibson is right - Cuomo is not to be trusted, he is to be watched closely throughout this process and, in the end, when he issues his agenda during his State of the State/budget address (assuming he's not under indictment by that point), called out for his betrayal of public education and the public trust and fought on every agenda point.
We will not be fooled.