Honorable Chair Rep. Ladd and members of the House Education Committee:
Please see attached testimony on HB603 as presented at today’s hearing.
We are seeing big problems in states like New York where they are a year ahead of NH in administering the Common Core Assessments, however we certainly have enough information from local teachers that also need to be thoughtfully considered.
Please compare the comments by Nashua teachers regarding the Smarter Balanced Assessment against what Heather Gage presented today:
David Murotake submitted testimony to the Joint Legislative Committee on Administrative Rules. In this testimony he explains the reactions from teachers in the Nashua School District after they administered the Smarter Balanced Assessment:
“Examples of Nashua teacher comments I heard include:
1. Shockingly negative experience.
2. Totally grade level inappropriate; difficult even for some teachers with advanced degrees.
3. Seems the test was designed more as a psychological or sociological experiment, not as a measure of academic learning. Who created this test, anyway? It couldn’t have been by professional educators.
4. This would be a crushing emotional experience for my students.
5. It is nothing less than child abuse for my special ed students in my classroom.
6. I refuse to administer this test to my students.”
It’s important to note that according to the U.S. Department of Education, CCSS will authorize the use of testing instruments that will measure the “attributes, dispositions, social skills, attitude’s and intra personal resources” of public school students (USDOE Feb, 2013 Report)
This 126-page report was published by the Office of Educational Technology and the U.S. Department of Education. The document says “There is a growing movement to explore the potential of the “non cognitive” factors – attributes, dispositions, social skills, attitudes, and interpersonal resources, independent of intellectual ability…”
The U.S. Department of Education paid $175 million to the Smarter Balanced Consortium so they can develop assessments and instructional modules. http://www.smarterbalanced.org/resources-events/faqs/ There are three federal statutes that prohibit their involvement. The federal government is actively involved in the “item design” of the Smarter Balanced Assessment. This means that there is federal oversight on the questions that will be on the test.
Ann Marie Banfield
Education Liaison, Cornerstone Action
Publisher’s note: For Banfield’s original testimony, click here.