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Lee County Board Member Set to Flip Vote

After voting 3-2 to opt out of the state’s massive and unethical testing regimen, the swing vote now claims she wants to switch her vote. There is a hurried meeting called for 8:30 am on Tuesday. This morning meeting after a holiday is designed to keep opposition away. Yes – parents work. I would urge the other opt out votes to skip the meeting and deny a quorum. Where did the pressure come from to flip the vote of Mary Fischer? Why did the superintendent Nancy Graham actively and publicly undermine the opt out decision of the board? Should the board remove her?
Nancy Graham has a vested interest in common core and its massive testing. She was a “common core academy” member for several years.
Testing will increase in FL this year. AIR testing will be longer than FCAT and test more grades. There is also another EOC being added. Last year, a middle school principal held a press conference to report that his school was involved in testing for 90 days. My high school was closed for testing (partly or fully) for 100 days. EOC testing alone took 47 days.
With several counties considering an opt out – a Lee County reversal will be devastating. Standardized testing is increasing and DOE and the legislature will not back down. Testing is a political hammer. All kids deserve to go to schools not testing 100 days a year. Test results mean little – if anything. GPA is the best predictor of college success and test scores have no influence on the economic success of a nation.
The goal of the legislature and DOE is to make public schools so onerous with testing that people leave. Politicians want to create the illusion of crisis using test scores as a cudgel. We must stay and fight to create schools that value learning, kids, and not testing. If Lee County reverses their vote they enable those who prey on schools and seek to scapegoat them for the ills of society.
The state cannot do anything if Florida counties unite. The Florida Constitution gives boards control over their districts- Article IX Section 4b.
Districts must act to end testing tyranny. Come what may…

PS: There are no state tests that kids have to take to graduate. The ACT or SAT can always be substituted. The AIR test does not count for graduation this year as there are no cut scores. Why take it? I can think of many tests that we should refuse to give.


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