"I know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education. This is the true corrective of abuses of constitutional power." - Thomas Jefferson 1820

"There is a growing technology of testing that permits us now to do in nanoseconds things that we shouldn't be doing at all." - Dr. Gerald Bracey author of Rotten Apples in Education

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Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Common Core Reality: The Cat's Out of the Bag in Missouri


Missouri districts will be required to use computer-based assessments by the 2014-15 school year.  Who/what is setting this requirement for your school district?

The San Francisco Chronicle reports Missouri schools are required to use computers for testing and the districts are reporting they don't have the funding for the computers, infrastructure and implementation.  

The article reported the Missouri Association of School Administrators found that 37 percent of districts lacked sufficient bandwidth and 44 percent needed hardware.This result contradicts DESE's statement that the vast majority (95%) of districts were ready for the assessments.
The article explains how administrators are concerned that the tests will not accurately test childrens' knowledge, rather, it will be a reflection of keyboarding skills.  Many districts do not have the funding available for these upgrades and they are apparently unable to make this transition.  

What this article doesn't address is WHY Missouri schools are transitioning to computerized assessments.  It's because of the common core mandates DESE, Governor Nixon and the State Board of Education signed taxpayers on to....unfunded mandates and nationalized standards/assessments.

CCSS mandates are going to cost districts money they don't have to comply with mandates voters never approved.

Can taxpayers file lawsuits under the Hancock Amendment to stop CCSS?  DESE, Nixon and the State Board of Education are mandating school districts to spend money they don't have for implementation of mandates taxpayers never had a chance to vote for or against.   Districts cannot tax citizens above a certain ceiling for schools without taxpayer approval.  
Would action under Hancock nix the expenditures and implementation mandated by CCSS? 

Are mandated common core costs borne by districts constitutional in Missouri?

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