The Continual Fight (and Fallout) of Common Core in Oklahoma
This time last year, Oklahoma was celebrating the passage of HB3399, which was the law to end Common Core once and for all in our state. Well, it turns out that the same groups that chanted, “Common Core is the law; we have no choice but to teach it” are not so gung ho to follow the law now that it is the law not to teach it. Unfortunately, one of the worst groups to thwart the LAW is the Oklahoma State School Superintendents Association, for which overpaid Superintendents are dancing all around the law with the help of our beautiful new State School Superintendent. They are doing everything possible to get Common Core back in, or keep it in by any other means or name.
One of the most egregious situations that is part of the fallout of Common Core is the loss of so many great teachers. Their creativity, their skill, their stand for rights of parents and children is not welcome here any longer. The ones who are outspoken against Common Core and the obsessive data collection are at risk of losing their jobs.
Linda Murphy, former educational policy advisor to Gov. Keating, said this:
Good teachers are being driven out of the classrooms by administrators who push the “new think” experimental methods. We must work to get rid of policies destroying our schools and remember the importance of a human being who cares about the students and applies their professional education and experience to helping them learn!
Those teachers that have been awarded and acclaimed and applauded in the past are leaving the field, either because they have been handcuffed into not doing their jobs the way they see fit, or nudged, pushed or shoved out because they might dare notify parents of their rights to opt out of a test, or let parents know that data is being collected on their children.
A few days ago we experienced another casualty, teacher Ginger Brown. Ginger was an outstanding teacher in the Oklahoma City Public School District. With her permission, I am sharing her story:
I would like to share a few words that sum up what I feel are the most frightening words I’ve ever heard in light of everything we know and everything that is occurring in education.
On Friday, I went to complete my end of the year check out with the principal at Mark Twain Elementary. I thanked her for the opportunity to teach there and expressed my gratitude for the experiences and learning I had gained throughout the year.
Her reply, “I feel that you are unteachable.” In …a few words she told me in no-uncertain terms, why she did not want me to return next year to teach at Mark Twain Elementary.
This from a principal in a district (OKCPS) that takes every opportunity to publicly cry out about teacher-shortages and inequitable distribution of certified and high-quality teachers in low-income and minority communities.
Regardless of my certifications, qualifications, highly effective evaluations, and data-driven proof of student progress, accomplishment and success, I am considered UNTEACHABLE.
I am a lifelong learner. I am extremely open to being taught new things and to learning new things, but I also reserve the right to remain objective and ask questions.
Unable to reeducate? Exactly!
School’s are not teaching critical thinking to their students or their staff. School’s are teaching absolute compliance and conformity in how and what people should think.
Throw out what we know. Throw out what we know works. Instead, spend countless hours and unjustifiable amounts of money to reeducate, retrain, and remold all minds to conform to the progressive, humanist model of education.
Aside from those profiting financially from the federal takeover of public education, the long yearned for goal by some, of the United States of America as a socialist collective controlled by the humanist ideology is being achieved.
Education is a powerful thing. The people in control of the nation’s education, those with the power to directly influence and reeducate the minds of anyone who passes through the door of any institution of education have the power to alter the past, control the present, and direct the future of an entire country and all within. Education can not be controlled. Education can not be centralized. Education must not be allowed to conform to the views of one entity, one ideology, one perspective, or one opinion.
The future of education in the United States of America is terrifying when we are told we are, “unteachable”, and then removed from the process entirely. Individual, objective thought is being systematically removed. This will not end well.
We all have a stake in our nation’s education. As an educator, a parent, and a citizen of the United States of America, I demand that our voices be heard, not marginalized, not silenced, and not removed from the process when we don’t agree. “Unteachable” is a word that should never come from the mouth of any educator! Ever!