I attended the WEIC Redistricting Committee meeting last night. I have concerns about the tight timeline and have expressed my concerns to the commission. There just does not seem like there is going to be enough time given to the public to review the recommendations and to have their concerns heard or their questions answered. The final report is not completed and the public hearing comment window opens on November 30th. How is the public going to go on record when they have not been given the report or enough time to review the report? The public hearings start in 16 days.
I know everyone on the commission and each of the committees have worked extremely hard and are committed to making positive changes for all our students. But, if you want public support we must inform them of the plans.
The next Redistricting Committee meeting will be held on November 19th from 4:00 until 6:00 at Baltz.
The Accountability Framework Working Group will be meeting on November 17th – 10:00 – Townsend Building – Cabinet Room in Dover. The group submitted their final recommendations at the last meeting which was to be their final meeting. It is my understanding that certain folks are not good with their recommendations and they are going to try to convince the group to change their recommendations. It is my understanding there are issues with the recommendations surrounding the participation rate penalties. I am hopeful the group will stick to their final recommendations and not be swayed.
The group is going to be informed that the 11th graders will no longer be required to take the Smarter Balanced test, instead the state will be replacing Smarter with the SAT. The SAT is given to all 11th graders throughout the state so no high school will drop below the 95% participation rate.
My issue is what about the other grades, what if participation drops below 95%, then what? How can you hold schools accountable for something they have no control over? If a parent wants to opt out their child, they have every right to and the school cannot do anything about it.
If the state does replace Smarter Balanced with SAT, I am glad that the 11th graders will have one less test to take. I guess before replacing one test with another, maybe some questions should be answered. What baseline are we going to use – what score will determine if a child receives a 1, 2, 3 or 4 or will the student have to score 1550 or more (college readiness score) to determine whether or not the child is proficient or not? How will the state measure growth if we are using the SAT as our state assessment for 11th graders? How will this test tie into evaluating our teachers and labeling our schools?
I am going to be honest here. I am going to be extremely disappointed if the new Secretary asks the Accountability Framework Working Group to change their recommendations. I know the Governor would like to see the recommendations changed as well as the State Board. I am hoping this is not the case, I will be attending the meeting on Tuesday and will report back on the meeting.
The State Board of Education will hold its regular monthly meeting starting at 1:00 on November 19th. The meeting will be held in the Cabinet Room – Townsend Building in Dover. Click hereto view the agenda.
The Accountability Framework Working Group recommendations will be voted on, it will interesting to see if the State Board changes the recommendations that the AFWG submitted to DOE. WEIC will be presenting, they just presented to the State Board at their retreat on November 5th.