Friday, April 14, 2017

A Letter to Nasue Nashida - Executive Director of Center for Strengthening the Teaching Profession

April 14, 2017
to: Executive Director of Center for Strengthening the Teaching Profession
Nasue Nashida

Dear Nasue,

I thank you for your efforts to improve teaching.

I have some major concerns about the failure to use relevant data in decision making.

I find the following statement totally incorrect yet it appears as a truth in a questionnaire
in "final sounding board on CCSS".

[[Here are the summaries of Sounding Board responses to issues on teacher evaluationCommon Core State Standards and the President’s Blueprint for Education.]]

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OSPI Benefit: Boost the competitive advantage of American Students, who for the first time will have the opportunity to meet the academic standards set by top performing countries. 

I wonder who made this statement and how and why it was placed in this questionnaire?

Jason Zimba, a lead writer of CCSS-M, admitted that these standards did NOT meet the academic standards set by top performing countries. 

If you were to compare the Common Core Math standards to the math standards used by any of the highest performing countries on TIMSS you would find that any of the high performing East Asian 5 countries have far higher standards than CCSS-M.

I also found many of the thoughts put forth by Jana Dean in the webinar of April 13, 2017 pushed math practices that are less than optimal.

It is time to recognize declines in both NAEP and TIMSS performance and revise recommendations.

I am all for the push for increased competence in
#1 Procedural Fluency
#2 Problem Solving
#3 Conceptual Understanding

but I find the recommendations being made will not accomplish maximal increases in these three areas.

I urge you to compare JUMP Math against EngageNY.

John Mighton, founder of JUMP Math, believes that the most efficient and effective route to conceptual understanding is founded in procedural fluency.   Currently I believe that an over-emphasis on the Standards for Mathematical Practice and inquiry needs to be avoided.  The content standards need to receive more emphasis, even though the standards for arithmetic proficiency in the early grades are far behind those of the East Asian 5.


Danaher M. Dempsey, Jr.

Olympia, WA

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