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There are 21 item(s) tagged with the keyword "Oligarchy".

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1. SB1455 Resurrected by Sen. Carlyle Begay. Please Help Get it Scheduled for Another Vote!

Wait!  Didn't you say SB1455 had been hijacked?  Then you said it was back on the right track?  Now you say it's been resurrected?  Yes, Yes, and Yes.  

After being placed on the "right track," it failed in the Senate on March 7 by a vote of 18 Nays; 11 Ayes; 1 Not Voting.  Shortly after, Sen. Carlyle Begay brought it up again.  (Only senators who voted Nay can do that, which is why Sen. Begay voted Nay.)

So, it can be Reconsidered.  The problem is this:  Is there anybody who can turn some of those Nays into Ayes?  

YES!  YOU!  See below for the names and contact information of Senators who voted Nay, followed by some Truths that YOU must convey to them, in order to convince them to change their vote.

Click HERE for the Excel File of Senators who Voted Nay. (Sen. Miranda did not vote.) Please contact them via Phone, Facebook, Email, In Person, and Twitter.  If you cannot open the file, please send me an email at anitalchristy@cox.net, and I will send it to you.

The Truth About Why You Should Support SB1455.  (These are prioritized based on the most common objections voiced by senators, and are not necessarily in order of your or my priority.)

1.  Standardized tests, including AzMERIT, are not the only assessments given to students throughout the year.  In fact, Standardized tests are unreliable in assessing a student's educational progress.  AzMERIT has never been validated or proven to be an indicator of a student's progress.  AzMERIT doesn't tell us anything about third-grade promotion.  AzMERIT is given in the Spring, but the results aren't available until November, which is three months after the next school year begins! Teachers have no input into Standardized Tests.  Teachers aren't allowed to see the tests. Teachers don't see their students' tests, even after they've been graded by third parties.  Parents don't see the graded tests.  Students don't see the graded tests.  Nobody has any idea what answers were right, and which were wrong!  

Better methods of evaluating student needs and progress already exist. Careful observations and documentation of student work and behaviors by trained teachers is more helpful than a one-time test. Assessment based on student performance on real learning tasks is more useful for measuring achievement and provides more information for teaching than multiple-choice achievement tests. Parents working with teachers, term grades, homework performance--these and other indicators are far better than AzMERIT.  See How Standardized Testing Damages Education.    

Click here to read more
Tags: AzMERIT, Common Core, High Stakes Testing, Schools, SBE, Oligarchy
2. I'm Sorry, Students

What does this video have to do with Arizona? This teacher is talking about the same kind of High Stakes Tests that are given to children here in Arizona as young as 8 years old.  AzMERIT is forced upon students, beginning in the third grade, and every year through high school.  In Arizona, it's AzMERIT; in Utah, it's SAGE;  in Florida it's the FSA. All of these states, including Ohio and others, have paid $Millions to American Institutes for Research, one of the world's largest behavioral and social science research and evaluation organizations to create these tests. 

As a parent, have you stood up for your child and opted out of AzMERIT?  Have you stood firm in the face of opposition from teachers, principals, school administrators, and the State?  If not, learn more by clicking HERE and HERE and HERE and HERE.  

Click here to read more
Tags: AzMERIT, Common Core, High Stakes Testing, Schools, Oligarchy, SBE
3. OPEN LETTER TO SENATOR SYLVIA ALLEN - SB1416

Dear Sen. Allen,

Like you, this has been an especially stressful session for me, too.  SB1416 (previously SB1313 previously SB1416 previously HB2184) is not what I planned to fight this session. 

I planned to do all possible to help parents protect their children from politicians and corporations that are using and abusing them, under the guise of “assessing their academic progress.”  AzMERIT by any name is an abomination brought to us by the Governor-appointed personalities on the State Board of Education (SBE).  In fact, it was the SBE that brought us AIMS, PARCC, and every other useless standardized test that has literally accomplished nothing in improving student achievement in Arizona.

It was the State Board of Education (SBE) that agreed to Common Core in Jan. 2010, before it was even written.  The SBE fell into lockstep to do what Governor Brewer required of them.  It was also the SBE that formally approved, in June 2010, the implementation of