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Thursday, October 29, 2015

Poor kids in Duval you’re $#@^ed

At the community meeting last night most of the people had complaints about the new math and language arts/reading curriculum. One set of parents said they desperately wanted to help their child and had even hired a retired math teacher to tutor but even they were struggling with the new math. They asked the super what they could do.
He applauded them for hiring a tutor and suggested they check out several web-sites too.
The problem is what about all those families that can’t afford to hire a tutor or don’t have a computer. What about those kids whose parents aren’t all that involved. Those children my friends are screwed. We have put them in a position where failure is almost guaranteed.
When we disenfranchise parents from helping their children. When we make children hate math, something many did even before the change over and when we make it so only middle class children can easily get assistance then we have lost our way.
The common core cure is worse than the disease.


  1. And we have been told we have to save every single piece of the math curriculum. Every. Single. Piece. So either you do not send it home, or you stamp "sign and return"and hope and pray you will get it all back. Why would I want to save all that crap? I have been letting parents keep the completed practice sets, but I do ask them to sign and return the exit tickets. Parents need to really push for a new curriculum. I wonder if they are making us keep it to verify if we are really doing it all?

    1. I send home the problem sets and sprints, too. I collect the exit tickets only. That is, if we get time to do exit tickets. If Johnny didn't understand the developmentally inappropriate lesson, why should he need to do the exit ticket? And then I get reprimanded for not "following the curriculum with fidelity."

  2. The computer issue is a critical one now that we are in the era of blended curriculums. What do you do when a student has no internet access at home? Don't tell me that Comcast offers a bargain deal for poor parents. I pushed that in the past and when parents contacted Comcast, the cable giant told them that we (DCPS/local school) had to verify the parent's income. Wait, what? Unless we violated parental rights to privacy and told Comcast their income, the parents could not get the deal? What a joke,

  3. As this is currently happening in my school, district specialist report to the district if you are behind. Then they come up with the idea to "customize" lesson. First they say you have to follow the lessons verbatim in Teacher Academy. Then as of late September, make it your own. Now the lessons can be " customized " also known as merge lessons together so that you are on track. My question is what qualifies the district specialist as experts with only one week of training on Engage NY this past summer.
    Chris: A story for you that would be worth checking into would be the qualifications of these directors and specialists. How many of the have degrees in Reading and Math? Not endorsements. How long was their training and analysis of the curriculum before it was rolled out?

  4. From the lips of Nikolai the Terrible:
    Elementary Math Parent Homework Helpline


    Mitchell, Tarsha N.

    Sun 11/1/2015 11:34 PM

    Show all 46 recipients


    Armenta, Jessica L.;

    Bond, Lisa C.;


    From: Vitti, Nikolai P. 
    Sent: Sunday, November 01, 2015 12:38 PM
    To: *ALL - Principals Elementary Schools
    Cc: Griffin, Jamie ; Gonzalez, Beth Ann C. ; Walton, Vernachele F. ; Davis, William M. ; Lehockey, Wendy S. ; Anderson, Anthony L. ; Bays, Judith K. ; Cagle, Sheree D. ; Coker, Kelly G. ; Davis, Addison G. ; Davis, Pamela M. ; Floyd-Hatcher, Michele Y. ; Roziers, Pearl M. ; Wright, Corey L. ; Wright, Iranetta R.
    Subject: Elementary Math Parent Homework Helpline


    Elementary Principals,


    Although we know that the new mathematics standards and curriculum will have a long-term benefit to our students, we also know that it has been a challenge for parents with elementary students. To provide additional support to parents we have developed a new resource, “The Elementary Math Parent Homework Helpline.”   This will begin on Tuesday, November 3rd and continue on Tuesday and Thursday nights.  Certified teachers will be available to assist families in solving problems and discussing mathematical questions and issues that their children are learning in class.  Parents can call in or join a collaborative online space from 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. in order to access assistance. Please share the following link with parents:  This is where they can access the online link to the whiteboard space should they have access to a computer.  Alternatively, parents can also call inby telephone: (571)-392-7703 PIN: 731 439 616 412.  We hope that this will prove to be a valuable resource for parents and students to support our teachers’ efforts in the classroom. 


    Please forward this information to your teachers.


    Please contact Mason Davis or Beth Gonzalez with any questions or concerns.



  5. There are so many things wrong with this school system. It's insane. We need to band together and fight this tooth and nail. I'm willing to get myself into as much trouble as needed if it means getting rid of Vitti and his ilk.

  6. RE: "He applauded them for hiring a tutor and suggested they check out several web-sites too."
    What parent has the time in the evenings to go online and research how to teach their child mathematics, and then teach their child? And why should they have to spend their free time doing so?

    This school district is so messed up.