What is common core? Part II

Published 7:00 am Friday, February 20, 2015

We have been using the “Mississippi Alternative” for generations and we just keep falling behind. We now have a nationwide program which would result in a Mississippi senior being able to work a math problem or write an essay as well as a student in one of the top systems in the country – Boston. We have an opportunity to improve our children’s educational ability and bring our school rating up from 52 in the nation (we rank below Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico.) We should be working to make sure Mississippi becomes the best steward of Common Core. Instead Lt. Gov. Reeves wants to throw our children out with the bath water.

If the legislators would fully fund the K-12 system, school districts could hire more teachers to bring the classroom size down. Teachers’ aides could be re-hired at all levels to assist each teacher with the students having problems. School districts could send lead teachers to more training seminars to understand how to better apply Common Core in their schools. Teachers could be paid to attend “in-house” training by the lead teacher so every teacher would be equally knowledgeable on Common Core. Finally, Common Core textbooks could be purchased for all classes.

Since MAEP was created during Gov. Winter’s term, it has been fully funded only twice. In both instances test scores increased the following year. We have a surplus from last year’s budget that was placed in the “rainy day” fund. Tell your legislators it’s raining. Our children are graduating without the tools to enter college. They cannot read well enough to take courses for a 2 year certificate from a community college or a four year degree from a university. The storm is coming in the form of a Mississippi work force that cannot qualify for jobs higher than McDonald’s. Is that the future you want for your children? If not, contact your legislators and tell them to fully fund education. Get out to vote in November 2015 for the Better Schools Better Jobs Initiative 42 for which you signed the petitions last year. Educate yourselves about Initiative 42. The legislators last week passed their own version of the initiative that would weaken it and allow them to continue cutting school districts funds. 

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

They complicated the voting process by making it a two step process. We will be posting more information on Common Core and Initiative 42 to make sure everyone understands how to vote for the initiative that 116,000 registered voters approved by signing the petitions last year. 

This is not a Republican issue or a Democratic issue. At issue is the future of our children. Follow us on our two Facebook pages: Pearl River Democrats or Picayune Democrats. Visit our website atprcdec.com and as always you can reach our Chair at her email address-rockman1935@aol.com.

By Agnes Dalton