From the Political Insider
The Obama Administration issued a threat directed at parents through Arne Duncan, the Secretary of Education. Concerned with many parents allowing their children to opt out of Common Core (PARCC) testing, Duncan is pushing back against their parental authority.
At a Q&A in Chicago, Duncan addressed his concern with states failing to force children to take the tests against the will of their parents.
“If states don’t do that, then we [the federal government] have an obligation to step in.”
The Opt Out movement continues to grow. In New York, 184,000 students opted out of testing. No Child Left Behind mandates that 95% of students in grades 3-8 take standardized tests in math and reading. Even in the blue state of New York, this requirement is not met.
Duncan stated that the federal government could intervene by labeling districts that didn’t meet the 95% requirement as “failing.” This designation would allow the federal government to place restrictions on that district by controlling how federal money is being used. Essentially, Duncan is flexing his muscle over local control and pressuring states to limit parental opt-out rights.
These tests are causing concern around the country from teachers, students and parents. Honors high school students posted a Youtube video of themselves being confused by the 6th grade PARCC practice test. Perhaps it should be suggested that Arne Duncan take these exams and see how he fares.
An Ohio teacher’s video explaining her frustration with the PARCC tests details the effect on the learning process. She states how “dysfunctional” the educational system has become due to these tests. Children who opt-out of the tests spend those many testing hours actually learning.
These tests are uniting parents, teachers and students against the strong handed bureaucracy of the Department of Education. Recently, Stacie Starr, who was named Top Teacher in the United States, resigned because of these tests.
Why do you think the Obama Administration is so adamant that students take these tests? Please comment below.