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Senate President Misrepresents NEA Position on Common Core


(March 6, 2014) After the defeat of Senate Bill 1310, Senate President Andy Biggs misrepresented NEA President Dennis Van Roekel’s recent statement regarding the poor implementation of Common Core by many states, as a position in opposition to the Standards.  The NEA and the AEA have been clear in supporting the Common Core State Standards, known as the Arizona College and Career Ready Standards, and in identifying the needs of our educators and schools to ensure that Arizona realizes the full potential of these standards to impact and improve student learning.
 
“Our members’ support is strongest for the content of the standards and their potential impact on student learning and readiness; their depth, higher cognitive levels, national continuity, and better alignment with demands after K-12 education,” said AEA President Andrew F. Morrill.
 
“The promise of the new standards can only be delivered if Arizona gets their implementation right.  That means our state’s leaders must fully fund the base level funding and begin to restore the cuts to our education system.”
 
AEA has shaped and articulated our support based on the majority of our members who have expressed an opinion.  Our members have also expressed grave concern about the following:

  1. Lack of sufficient resources to instruct students as they would like in mastery of the ACCRS.
  2. Need for professional development and the time to learn how to efficiently and effectively instruct to these standards to foster student mastery and success.
  3. School districts’ need for technology and broadband to meet the requirements of online ACCRS assessments.
  4. Evaluations and compensation based on student performance aligned with ACCRS, without enough time for students to learn the standards or without adequate resources.
  5. High-stakes personnel decisions will be based on student performance as measured by an assessment that does not yet exist; therefore, teachers have no way of knowing what the metric of success will be or how it will be constructed.
  6. Arizona’s poor track record of support for public schools as evidenced by the drastic cuts to public education funding over the past 8 years.

Despite enormous challenges, there are scores of examples in districts across the state of enthusiastic, effective, and sustainable efforts on the part of administrators and teachers to conduct training, planning, and instructional design focused on student success with and mastery of our ACCRS.
 
Educators will do whatever they need to in order to foster student success and growth; however, the success of ACCRS will depend on the support from Arizona’s elected leaders.


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