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Common Core opponents organize cross country protest

Rochester, N.Y. - Opponents of the Common Core testing plan to hold a formal protest, calling it "National Dont Send Your Child to School Day" on Monday, November 18. 

Many parents promoted the protest on various social media sites Friday.

I think parents are just frustrated and they dont know what else to do, said Kimberly Salisbury.

The parents encourage other parents to teach their kids at home that day and peacefully protest at their local school districts board of education building.

The mother of a fourth grader, Salisbury said shes debating whether or not to send her daughter to school Monday morning: Shes already bored because shes doing the same thing over and over and over again.

Salisbury said because the Common Core test scores translate to teacher evaluations, educators are forced to focus on the material covered in exams.

Salisbury said, There is a lot of stake so they have to pretty much teach to whats going to be on that test rather than just concentrate what the student needs to learn and concentrate on how they need to learn.

So instead of learning new material, Salisbury said, students waste valuable class time reviewing for the assessments.

A statement released on behalf of the Rochester City School District Friday evening said:

Participating in this effort would only teach children a bad lesson about the importance of attending school every day. It is unfortunate that parents anywhere would deprive children of classroom instruction to express an adult opinion. We are confident that Rochester parents who have concerns about the Common Core standards will find an appropriate way to express them.

While Salisbury said she doesnt want her child to skip a day of school, one day is nothing compared to the amount of time wasted preparing for one set of exams.

Now weve wasted a year, two years or however many years it is and these kids are behind, so its the future of our children. Salisbury said, Thats why people are so frustrated and emotional.

Parents and teachers have complained about the rigorous tests, which require students to explain how or why they got their answers, resulting in low scores. Teachers argue to program was brought into classrooms too quickly.

Richard Miles said, Youre lumping everybody in with these assessments and youre teaching the lowest common denominator.

A former teacher, Miles said the Common Core tests and standard are why he plans to homeschool his children next year.

You adopted a curriculum that really is not going to help the kids, its not about the kids, Miles said, Its not what youd do if it was about the kids.

Common Core supporters cite new teacher ratings as proof the testing has been effective. The state said 92 percent of teachers statewide earned effective or highly effective ratings based on the tests.

 
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