Monthly Archives: January 2015

Event: Dr. Peg Luksik Talks Common Core and SBAC in Boise 01/27

Dr. Peg Luksik

Dr. Peg Luksik

Idahoans For Local Education is hosting a lecture from Dr. Peg Luksik in Boise on 01/27.  It will be held at Capital Building in downtown Boise in room WW02 from 6:30-8:30pm.

A brief Bio on Dr. Luksik from Idahoans for Local Education:

About Dr. Peg Luksik – Dr. Peg Luksik is a Pennsylvania teacher with over 35 years of experience in both special education and elementary education. She has taught at every level from pre-school to college in regular classrooms, resource centers, self-contained special education classes, and in alternative educational settings. She has trained teachers in curriculum and classroom management,written and evaluated curricula, authored several books on education issues, and hosted a nationally syndicated television program dealing with education in America. She founded a program to assist low-income single mothers complete their educations which was recognized by President Reagan and named as a National Point of Light by President George Bush. Peg served as an advisor to President Reagan’s Commission on the Family and worked for the U.S. Department of Education, where her task was to review and evaluate education reform initiatives. Most importantly, Peg and Jim, her husband of 35 years, have raised 6 wonderful children and are now proud grandparents.

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Writing on the Wall: The End of Common Core and High Stakes Standardized Assessments?

Sen. Mike Crapo

Sen. Mike Crapo

Recently, a coalition of senators in DC, including Idaho Sen. Crapo, sponsored legislation that would, in effect, render Arne Duncan’s tenure as Secretary as the U.S. Dept. Of Education null and void.

That’s because the bill proposed in the upper chamber would prohibit the federal government from tying federal dollars to a mandated set of standards or require Standardized Achievement Tests.

The Local Leadership in Education Act, as the legislation is officially titled, boldly declares its intention as:

To prohibit the Federal Government from mandating, incentivizing, or coercing States to adopt the Common Core State Standards or any other specific academic standards, instructional content, curricula, assessments, or programs of instruction.

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Update: Frankenstein, Idaho’s 40 Million Data Monster is Aliv…err…Dead?

640px-Frankenstein's_monster_(Boris_Karloff)The J.A. & Kathryn Albertson Foundation executive director, Roger Quarles, recently announced that the foundation will shift their philanthropic spending away from education and more towards community spending projects.

If anyone was shocked by this move, they shouldn’t have been; the foundation lost over 20 million dollars last year in an educational data tracking project they had no business involving themselves in.

Albertson blindly ignored the advice of the federal government warning against giving money to the ill-thought-out project up when the US Dept. Of Ed refused to issue Idaho a grant for a longitudinal data tracking system citing a myriad of problems with Idaho’s proposal.

Despite this warning, Albertson ponied up over 20 million dollars in cash for the project themselves…dollars that were so dysfunctionally spent the foundation is now refusing to give another dime to the project.

A little context here: See, a few months ago I took on the task of calculating the total cost of ISEE/Schoolnet, Idaho’s longitudinal student and teacher data tracking system.

Not only did a narrative of a taxpayer checkbook out of control quickly become apparent with the project bloating even the wildest projections of cost to develop (upwards of 42 million and counting), but an additional narrative of total dysfunction also emerged.

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2014 Idaho Education Reviewed, and 2015 Previewed: A Teacher’s Perspective

idahoLast year I wrote that I was a half glass empty optimist. I was encouraged by a rebounding economy that surly would help districts restore furloughs, unfreeze salary grids, and even help pay for those twinky yellow things on the road that apparently shuttle students to school.

I was cautious as many districts either continued or implemented new four day school weeks, put bandaids on crumbling infrastructure, and particularly struggled in those minority of districts that have steadfastly opposed levies despite dwindling statewide funds.

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