State gets funds to promote Common Core; Thayn rejects testing

Two major proponents of Idaho Core Standards will get a $200,000 grant to launch a state wide public information campaign explaining what they are and how they work.

The campaign began last weekend.

The Idaho Department of Education and the Idahoans for Excellence in Education Coalition will partner on the campaign. The coalition is made up of education organizations and business groups that back Idaho Core Standards.

Funding comes through the Foundation for Education Excellence, chaired by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and the GE Foundation. The campaign will include traditional and social media.

Idaho Core Standards are the state’s version of educational goals adopted in 45 states for what students should know and be able to do by the time they graduate from high school.

Opponents have said the standards are an intrusion into state and local education policies. They have also said achievement testing takes up too much classroom time.

And speaking of testing, State Sen. Steven Thayn  said Tuesday that he opposes the achievement exams which go along with Idaho Core Standards. Thayn has questioned the exams for several months. In a statement, he  complained about the testing time, a lack of timely feedback to teachers on how student performe and some of the testing mechanics.

“The main purpose of tests should be to help teachers and parents,” he said. “(This test) seems to be a tool for  policy makers to monitor, control and manipulate teachers, students, and parents.”

Posted in In The Classroom