As many of you know, I am both personally and professionally (PolicyBEST) in favor of the Common Core State Standards Initiative. I’ve written about it here on Peach Pundit on many occasions. Sometimes with some less than cordial folks in the comment section.
The next twist in the saga to not ruin 10 years of Republican Education reform in Georgia, brings us to Cobb County. In the Marietta Daily Journal there is an op ed piece by the former Assistant Superintendent for Instructional Services, Stanley Wrinkle.
Mr. Wrinkle chronicles the recent failure to acquire new textbooks because some anti Common Core activists showed up at the School Board meeting and decided that it was in the best interest of all of Cobb County’s students to not get new math text books. In Mr. Wrinkle’s words:
The board has a district rule which clearly explains how texts and instructional materials are to be adopted by the board. Last year, teachers and central staff followed this procedure to the letter, enabling the superintendent to present the recommended mathematics adoption to the board. However, a relatively small group of citizens appeared at the meeting demanding the board refuse to adopt the teacher recommended texts and materials because the group was opposed to the state’s association with the Common Core curriculum standards. The board accepted and agreed to the demands of the group and refused the teachers’ recommendations.
The logic was that the legislature was going to remove Georgia from the CCSS during the 2014 session. The decision was to hold off and see what happened. Thankfully, there was no bill to pull Georgia out of Common Core. There was one masquerading as such, but SB 167 was only going to keep science from being taught in Georgia schools, remove the ability to have online schools or distance learning in Georgia, oh and to keep the SAT, ACT, PSAT, ASVAB, and AP tests from being administered in Georgia. You know, no big deal.
Session has been over for a couple months, yet there has been no appearance of Superintendent Hinojosa before the Board to revisit the subject of text books and teaching materials. Hinojosa, you may recall, has already announced his retirement and return to Texas.
The failure to adopt new math materials will penalize our students the next school year when they take their end of course exams. By delaying this further, there will not be enough time to train teachers on the new math materials, and our students will suffer for that. Teacher’s have dealt with enough over the last few years, can we start treating them like the professionals they are?
Teachers already put up with a lot that they shouldn’t have to. We don’t need to take out their knees and punish our children because of a small number of very loud individuals that like conspiracy theories. Let the teachers and kids have a math book. This isn’t social studies or history. Y=mx+b does not need to be political.
I share with Mr. Wrinkle’s appeal, and I don’t think I could say it better.
My appeal to the Cobb Board of Education is to call a special meeting as soon as reasonably possible for the single purpose of approving the already one year-delayed adoption of mathematics text and instructional materials.
The last point is this: Some have said again there may not be four board member votes for the adoption. This could not be true and, as stated previously, is an insult to the board. How could anyone justify delaying getting badly needed instructional materials to our teachers and students?
Surely there is not one board member who would hold an objection to Common Core and take it out on our teachers and students through delaying this adoption again just to make a political point.
If this is true, the Cobb School district is in deep trouble.