Sen. Seward Calls For Delay on Common Core Standards
Republican State Senator Jim Seward is among a dozen state senators that are demanding New York's education commissioner to further delay the rollout of the State's new Common Core learning standards.
The Senate Education Committe held a hearing Thursday with State Education Commissioner John King Jr. Citing frustration and complaints by parents, teachers and administrators Seward and his fellow lawmakers say the state needs to hit the pause button on the new education standrds.
King responded to the requests for delays by saying the need for the academic improvement is "urgent." He acknowledged "uneven" implementation by the state's 700 school districts and 4,500 schools. King promised more adjustments in state guidance, and noted the Education Department has already recived some federal testing waivers and will seek additonal waivers for students with disabilities and for students whom English is a second language.
King also acknowledged the need for more professional development.
Lawmakers cited the ongoing uproar in local schools in connection withthe new standards, the Education Department needs to give teachers more time to catch up and learn the new requirements and curriculum before having to teach it.
The first time students will be required to pass the Common Core regents exams will be in 2017, or seven years after the state adopted the curriculum. King pointed out that a majority of students entering New York's community colleges had to take remedial courses to get up to college level course, showing the need for the changes.
Other senators brought up complaints about parents now unable to help their children with their homework, and worries about the security of student data held by a private contractor.
Some lawmakers said if changes are not forthcoming they will bring a lawsuit against the Education Department.