Florida: Lee and Palm Beach County looking to opt-out of high stakes testing (+Video)

There is a growing movement against the high stakes testing requirement in Florida’s public schools. The School Boards of Lee and Palm Beach County are seriously looking at opting out of the Florida (Common Core) State Standards testing program.

NewsPress.com’s Emily Atteberry reports:

FCAT. Florida Standards. Common core.

No matter what you call it, the school board wants it gone.

[Palm Beach County] Board members unanimously expressed their disdain for standardized testing at the school board meeting Tuesday, pledging to research the possibility of “opting out” the entire district from standardized testing.

“There needs to be a come-to-Jesus meeting … to talk about these issues point blank,” Chairman Tom Scott said.

Read more.

Lamarre Notargiacomo, American Coalition 4 Property Rights, in an email writes, “Thanks to the efforts of the Lee County School Board, Chris Quackenbush and other dedicated parents, their decision to opt out of Standardized testing is having a domino effect. Miami-Dade School board has also said they want out, but their legislators are not listening to them. PBC wants to allow parents to opt out. Parents, if we defeat the high stakes standardized testing (huge corporations profiting from the tests being administered, to the people who are being paid to ‘grade’ the tests, which can be very subjective), we can defeat Common Core. Pass on this good news. Call your legislators and governor Scott and tell him we want to reject the Standardized, computerized AIR testing consortium.”

Sandy Krischke notes, “Another interesting tidbit of information I found out was that, according to Florida state law, the ONLY standardized testing currently mandated IS that singular, high stakes test.  While I agree that we should absolutely be able to opt out of it…I also think we should start pressing our districts to explain WHY our children are testing so much outside of that mandate. They gripe and complain all the time about unfounded mandates, yet our teachers must prepare for, administer, and study the results of numerous other tests throughout the school year, many of which start just weeks into the academic year. How much curriculum can be taught and time spent on our kids learning instead of all these tests.  Benchmark exams, etc….I have spoken to several teachers and they are told this is a requirement….but had no idea that the state did not mandate these tests. Time to hold their feet to the fire. Let’s keep the pressure on.”

Will this movement spread? Florida groups like Teaching is Not Testing and the Florida Stop Common Core Coalition are working to educate the educators on the pitfalls of high stakes testing, which is an integral part of Common Core. The below videos tell the story being heard by local school boards across Florida and beyond.

Palm Beach School Board Remarks on Standardized Testing

Remarks by members of the Palm Beach County School Board about excessive standardized testing. August 20, 2014. NOTE: This clip has been edited to focus on just remarks about standardized testing.

More and More Testing, Less and Less Instructional Time

Parent Clare Kirchman speaks to the School Board of Palm Beach County, Florida on August 20, 2014 about the excessive standardized testing which makes for less and less instructional time.

Kids React to 2+2=5 (Common Core)

This is a composite video covering the history of Common Core and the use of bio-metrics to monitor students in the classroom with the objective to measure how well a teacher is teaching.


The Privatizing Agenda of Survey-producing Education Next
“Reframing” California Common Core for a Better Public Sale
Peter Greene: Why Teachers are Breaking Up with Common Core
The AstroTurf Lament: Common Core in Two 2014 Public Opinion Polls

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