Per the article below, the editor at Seacoastonline.com suggests that the Education Commissioner must NOW be kept in check.
Really? NOW they want to keep a close eye on the Commissioner of Education in New Hampshire?
Parents across the state of New Hampshire have been trying to get someone in the media to pay attention to the failed education reforms that are hurting their children and driving them to remove their kids from the public schools. Just look at the comments from almost 2,000 people who’ve signed the petition to get Common Core out of New Hampshire. Where have they been for the past seven years?
Commissioner Edelblut has made some excellent suggestions, like reviewing Common Core and the Next Generation Science Standards. This is what he was hired to do and what state law requires of the New Hampshire Commissioner of Education.
Watch for those playing politics with our children.
It appears as if their motive is politically motivated rather than any real attempt at looking at facts and information. How can anyone take this editorial seriously when the media has been all but absent in reporting on how bad Common Core has been for students in New Hampshire.
When parents cannot help their children with 2nd grade math homework, and no one in the media cares, how can this be taken seriously? Sorry, I’m not buying this new found concern for public education from Seacoastonline.com.
Below is my letter to the editor in response to their editorial you can read here:
In reply to your editorial, I’m wondering where you were during the last Commissioner’s tenure. It appears that your article expects us to now pay attention to what Commissioner Edelblut will do as acting Commissioner, but many parents want to know why this was not a priority during former Commissioner Barry’s term. Under Commissioner Virginia Barry, the New Hampshire Department of Education facilitated the federal education reforms put forth by the Obama administration. Federal reforms such as the Common Core Standards that have driven parents to pull their children out of the New Hampshire public schools.
Commissioner Barry and Governor Hassan both supported adopting the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) too. Science standards that do not include the scientific method, and include few chemistry standards that would not justify even a very basic one- semester chemistry course. The principles of evolutionary biology are also incomplete and sometimes incorrectly stated. Physics is all but completely absent, with an occasional rudimentary nod to a physics principle. The life science standards are lacking a considerable amount of biology, including whole body systems, cell and tissue types, cellular feedback mechanisms, protein structure and function, cell division (mitosis and meiosis), bacteria and virus. Physical Science omissions include: Newton’s first law, energy, thermodynamics, Ohm’s law simple electrical circuits, and lab safety. These are just some of the glaring problems with the NGSS recently adopted by the New Hampshire State Board of Education.
Commissioner Edelblut has called for reviewing the NGSS in an attempt to improve them. The State Board of Education members voted to prevent him from working towards that goal. What are they afraid of, quality public schools for our kids? Shouldn’t we expect the best for children in public schools? Why aren’t our state board members encouraging Commissioner Edelblut to work towards that goal?
The editorial focused on Creationism versus science topics absent in our current science standards. Between the editorial and the State Board of Education, it almost appears as if this is political posturing rather than an unbiased examination of what the new Commissioner wants to do to improve public education in New Hampshire.
Maybe we should all support the Commissioner when he suggests ways to improve public education and if there are proposals in the future that need to be addressed, let’s deal with it at that time.
School choice has become a big issue across the country because of the decisions made by our former Governor and Commissioner. Common Core and Next Generation Science standards have been a reason for many parents in New Hampshire to withdraw their children from the public schools. If you oppose school choice then maybe you should support the Commissioner in his efforts to improve the public schools. Maybe then the political push for school choice won’t be as prominent as it is today.
Ann Marie Banfield currently volunteers as the Education Liaison for Cornerstone Action in New Hampshire. She has been researching education reform for over a decade and actively supports parental rights, literacy and academic excellence in k-12 schools. You can contact her at: [email protected]