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Local News

February 8, 2014

Area schools welcome Common Core review


“We need to hit the pause button to take the time to get it right,” he said. “The Board of Regents and Education Commissioner John King seem to be tonedeaf.”

On Jan. 25, the New York State United Teachers’ Board of Directors approved a resolution declaring among other things, the withdrawal of its support from the Common Core standards

Unatego Central School Superintendent Charles Molloy said: “I think it is good for us to take a deep breath and look at how it has been done.”

The Common Core, a set of standards about what students should accomplish at each grade level, is focused on developing thinking skills and understanding, Molloy said, and is required to do by the state Department of Education.

The local BOCES has provided training to help with the rollout, but “there was an awful lot in it, and it was delivered too fast,” he said. In addition, tying the results to teacher evaluations — another state mandate — was asking a little too much, he said.

Molloy said he’s seen frustration from some teachers in the overall process. The district has given them leeway in how to use the modules, he said, which are prepared lesson plans on how to teach the material. Some have been apprehensive about deviating from them, he said, because they provide the basis for the standardized tests that come later in the year. Some have embraced them, he said, while others would like to see a more traditional curriculum.

Delaware Academy Central School Superintendent Jason Thomson said he applauds Cuomo for wanting a panel to look at the issues. But he was concerned it does not include any representative from this area of the state. There is a large group of professionals that could be of service if Cuomo were looking for “fair and equal representation,” Thomson said.

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