Top NY education officials take their pro-Common Core message to church

Apr 17, 2013 by

NEW YORK – The debate over Common Core is becoming so widespread that some New York City residents can’t even escape it when they go to church.

GothamSchools.org reports that two of New York’s top education officials delivered a pro-Common Core message to the 25,000-member congregation at Greater Allen AME Cathedral.

State Education Commissioner John King and New York City Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott asked congregants to support New York’s drive toward Common Core, a controversial nationwide program that ensures every American K-12 student receives a similar foundation of academic instruction.

The duo’s appearance came two days before New York’s students – from grades three through eight – began taking the first state tests tied to Common Core standards, the news site reports.

New York State United Teachers – the state’s teachers union – strongly opposes Common Core, primarily on the basis that it places too much emphasis on standardizes testing.

Other critics of Common Core say it effectively nationalizes K-12 education by transferring control of public schools from local communities and the individual states to Washington D.C.

King and Walcott rebuffed those criticisms.

“When it comes to the education of our children, we don’t have as much time as the patient and the cautious would give,” said King, evoking language used by Martin Luther King Jr. during the civil rights movement, according to GothamSchools.org.

In making his case for tougher testing standards, King cited 2011 statistics that found 145,000 New York students were not “college or career” ready.

“There will be people who will say it’s too hard. It’s too much. Better for us to continue to fool ourselves about our students’ performance,” King told the audience. “But Dennis and I believe that’s wrong.”

Some of the parishioners remained skeptical of the effects of Common Core.

In a conversation with King, Jacob Adjaye explained that the tough new testing program could jeopardize his children’s efforts to gain admittance to prestigious preparatory schools.

“I feel that they’re at a disadvantage,” Adjaye told King.

In the coming weeks, EAGnews will issue an in-depth look at the controversy surrounding Common Core.

Stay tuned.

via Top NY education officials take their pro-Common Core message to church – EAGnews.org :: Education Research, Reporting, Analysis and Commentary.

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