For those under the impression that opting out of Common Core testing couldn’t possibly have an effect on the program, think again. New York has seen a rise in the last year in the number of parents opting to exclude their children from Common Core testing. Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob Astorino announced that he had opted to remove his children a couple months ago.
A new report shows that opting out of Common Core is causing serious headaches for school leaders and Core supporters throughout New York State.
Via EAG News:
U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan and his pro-Common Core cohorts have a serious problem on their hands in New York where a growing number of parents are opting their children out of Common Core-aligned standardized testing.
So many students are opting out of the tests that some school districts are seeing their assessment participation rate drop below 95 percent as required under the federal government’s No Child Left Behind law. A low participation rate in back-to-back years causes the federal government to classify a district as not making “adequate yearly progress.” That status would force local school leaders to create an “improvement plan” and could lead to the loss of federal grants, reports Syracuse.com.
In other words, the federal government will attempt to cause bureaucratic headaches and financial problems for uncooperative school districts.
Schools such as Westhill Central School District and Central Square School District saw a 91% and 88% participation rate respectively. These districts will likely have to come up with those “improvement plans.” Worse, as Central Square superintendent Joseph Menard says, “We’re concerned if this will have any impact on the federal grant money we receive.”
Parents complaining and students staying home might not have a direct impact, but those actions are precipitating a loss of funds for school districts. That will most assuredly get the attention of administrators.
The rate of students opting out of Common Core testing has risen since last year in many New York City school districts as well. One example is the Red Hook School District, where 7% of students opted out last year, while 10% opted out this year. With most districts sending out letters explaining the ramifications of opting out, one can reasonably assume that parents felt such strong opposition to the program that they were still willing to keep their kids home during testing.
EAG News writes:
The elites who foisted Common Core unto K-12 schools in 44 states never expected the parent-led pushback they’re getting in New York.
What remains to be seen is how legislators respond to this debacle. Will they propose legislation to rein in Common Core standards? Or will they punish parents or students who insist on opting out of Common Core?