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New regulations to public education causing controversy

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Controversy surrounds a new set of academic standards for Pennsylvania Public Schools. The new regulations, the ” Common Core ” standards provides a framework of what public school students should be taught at each level. Those opposed, are worried about the cost to the school district and the change to Keystone State Exams.

“You can set academic standards as high as you want but if you don’t have the resources it’s like telling teachers to spin straw into gold like a Rumpelstiltskin Fairy Tale,” says Wythe Keever,  Assistant Communications Director, PSEA

Students must pass or they wouldn’t graduate.

“ You could pass the course with an A, but if you don`t pass the test you`re out the door!  How many students are going to leave school ?” , says Senator Andy Dinniman (D-Chester/Montgomery)

Those in favor say it’s time for the state to set higher standards ,and students who fail would be given another chance.

“ They’re made to be end of course exams like finals, if students can’t pass them, we’ve allowed a project based assessment for students who don’t test well. The important thing is they learn the content  and then we have multiple ways of assessing them,” says Dr. Carolyn Dumaresq , Deputy Secretary of Education

Lawmakers are holding hearings this week to discuss the regulations.


  • Darly

    More bureaucracy in education. Schools are struggling to find funds to meet their budgets and now this. In my opinion, if a student attends school, passes all his/her courses of study and all tests associated with same, another test to determine whether or not the student is eligible to graduate is just plain stupid. Just what our children need, more useless testing. Doesn't anyone have any commonsense these days?

    • Guest

      So many students take the bare minimum of courses in math, science, english, etc. and pack their schedules full of electives like gym, shop, home ec, etc. In that situation, it's highly likely that a student could have an exceptional GPA, due to the relative ease of the classes they took, but still be severely lacking in the fundamentals of education. I think a standardized test for what basic knowledge a high school graduate should possess is a reasonable step in the right direction. However, this problem won't get resolved until we can attract better educators. There are very little, if any, incentives for someone to be a teacher, and until those incentives are given (i.e. better pay) you're not going to attract those types of individuals. If you want to pay your teachers $26K a year (that's barely enough to keep up with student loan payments) then you're going to attract teachers who put forth $26K worth of effort a year.

  • beverly

    do you have any idea how far behind the curve we are in education in this country? there are other countries blowing us out of the water. our kids deserve a chance at a better education, to have a fighting chance. maybe you should read all of the information about this program before you form a decision. that is what someone with common sense would do.

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