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Calcasieu School Board to slow Common Core implementation

Last Modified: Tuesday, November 12, 2013 10:21 PM

By Kara Carrier / American Press

The Calcasieu Parish School Board on Tuesday voted to slow the implementation of Common Core in the district. Superintendent Wayne Savoy said he wants teachers to adapt to the standards before they are assessed on them.

“No one is against higher standards,” he said. “But if your job is dependent on an assessment — your job and your effectiveness as a teacher — you’re going have a concern to be sure that there’s a real connection between what’s your job and what you’re rated as a teacher in the classroom truly measures.”

Savoy said the state is moving too quickly in its implementation of the standards and its judging of schools and effectiveness. He said he wants to be sure that everything is fair. The School Board’s actions Tuesday will give him an opportunity to present a resolution like other districts have done, Savoy said.

“I want to be sure that the good things we like about Common Core ... and the concerns we have are in that resolution,” he said.

“If you look at the resolutions that I have been seeing from other districts, the word ‘delay’ is in there. Let us work through this thing and find out how we can do it better. Then proceed at that point.”

The word “delay” in a resolution refers to “probably the ratings of teachers as it relates to how students did on the . . . assessment.”

Savoy said he has been receiving feedback from educators parishwide about the new state standards and will be reviewing the material and sharing it with board members.

The board passed the measure with a voice vote. Board member Fredman Hardy was the only board member who voted in opposition. Hardy he said he opposed the voted because he “doesn’t like the idea of trying to deceive ourselves with this phony timeline stuff.”Board member Randy Burleigh was absent from the meeting.

In other business, the board unanimously approved the creation of Maplewood Elementary by the division of Maplewood Middle, which is currently Pre-Kindergarten though 8th grade. The school will be turned into an elementary school to be named Maplewood Elementary, grades Pre-K through 5th grade, and a middle school, grades 6-8, which will retain the name Maplewood Middle. Both schools will be located at the site of the current Maplewood Middle. The board also approved the creation for the position of a principal for Maplewood Elementary. According to Savoy, one of Maplewood Middle’s three assistant principal positions will be converted to a principal position. “No additional staff will be needed,” said Savoy. “The only cost will be $12,500 per year.”

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