Why the commotion about iPads, Common Core and PARCC?

With very short notice, HWRSD parents were invited to an informational meeting the evening of 4/1 about a new program being rolled out in the fall.  The Assistant Principal presented a mandatory iPad leasing program for all 9th and 10th grade students under the marketing moniker “1:1 Learning“.  Reaction was mixed at best.

At the school committee meeting on 4/3/14, the Superintendent proposed a major reorganization of staff across the entire district to accommodate a significant increase in “evaluations” and “data collection”.  Lacking any justification, the plan would trigger a significant net decrease in teacher staff, and subsequent increase in administration staff. This could only occur with significant teacher layoffs to pay for hires to collect “additional data”.  Subsequent research uncovered the “evaluations and data collection” is part of an experimental program called PARCC.

Both programs were presented to parents, students and school committee members as fait-accompli.  There was no evidence of a process that included input from teachers or parents.  In neither case did the administration present a rational, student centric justification for the changes.

Vague implications drive major, untested changes

Both programs were presented with the implication that they were required by law and that Chapter 70 state funding would be threatened if the school district did not implement Common Core/PARCC/iPad.

Neither of these implications is true.

Start learning, talking and networking.

As people began to network and ask questions, parents began to discover other groups in surrounding districts and across the state (and country) having similar alarming reactions.  A picture is beginning to emerge. These changes are not only bad for our children’s education, they have negative legal implications, lower educational standards, and increase costs.

This website is designed to help educate parents, teachers, students, and administrators about what this means to the future of our students education.  There is a lot of information coming to light in a short period of time, much of which should be of significant concern to parents, teachers and students.

The two most immediate issues that parents, teachers and students should be aware is that the district has immediate plans to take actions that have major impact on many different stakeholders (students, teachers and parents).  Once these changes are put in place, it will be difficult to reverse them.  The issues are:

Mandatory iPad Leasing program, (aka “1:1 Learning”) and the district wide reorganization that will drop the number of teachers and increase the number of staff dedicated to “data collection”.

Take some time to learn more about these programs, what’s behind them, and join the effort to stop them.  Evidence is mounting that these programs are not only not necessary, they will harm our children’s education.

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