Madison board: Don’t repeal Common Core standardsPublished 9:21pm Thursday, April 18, 2013
MADISON – Madison Board of Education members reinforced the success of Common Core standards in the classroom and their opposition to the Alabama legislature’s possible repeal.
This discussion filtered from the instruction committee’s meeting earlier on April 18. Board member Ranae Bartlett said some individuals’ “fear” in the associated rigor had been relieved. Madison Elementary School Principal Dr. Timothy Scott confirmed that Common Core standards have given students a better understanding of math concepts, compared to 2012 assessments.
“The whole-group rigor experience involves college ready standards and critical thinking with journals to write reasons for their answers,” Scott said.
“Why is the answer ’15′?” Bartlett said in emphasizing the reasoning that students gain in math study with Common Core. Bartlett rhetorically asked, “Who is controlling the curriculum? Is it the Obama administration?” Scott confirmed that the state of Alabama controls curriculum standards.
Board member Connie Spears said rigor in elementary math must increase to improve performance in high school. “One big premise of Alabama College and Career Standards is not memorizing facts but understanding why you do something” and alternative methods for math operations, Spears said.
“It’s vitally important that we do not repel Common Core in Alabama. Not only are students (learning at accelerated rates) but we spent $800,000 in math textbooks (in 2012) and are ready to do the same thing for English next year,” Spears said.
The board approved a “land transaction exchange” with Brandon Rogers with Tri-Max, which owns land adjacent to the system’s bus garage in Arlington Park on Westchester Drive. Tri-Max will buy an empty lot at the location and “swap” that parcel with another lot owned by Madison City Schools. Board attorney Woody Sanderson said the exchange would give the district a parcel with improved drainage and without a ditch.
Sanderson said his law firm represents Arlington Park, but a conflict of interest does not exist.
Technology coordinator Katrina Allen said “disaster recovery” is complete from the May 2012 backup failure and data loss. The state technology department has completed an on-site review.