Gov. Kate Brown signed a law to allow Oregon students to graduate without proving they can write or do math. She doesn’t want to talk about it.

https://web.archive.org/web/20210807000800/https://www.oregonlive.com/politics/2021/08/gov-kate-brown-signed-a-law-to-allow-oregon-students-to-graduate-without-proving-they-can-write-or-do-math-she-doesnt-want-to-talk-about-it.html

Gov. Kate Brown signed a law to allow Oregon students to graduate without proving they can write or do math. She doesn’t want to talk about it.

By Hillary Borrud

August 6, 2021

For the next five years, an Oregon high school diploma will be no guarantee that the student who earned it can read, write or do math at a high school level.

Gov. Kate Brown had demurred earlier this summer regarding whether she supported the plan passed by the Legislature to drop the requirement that students demonstrate they have achieved those essential skills. But on July 14, the governor signed Senate Bill 744 into law.

Through a spokesperson, the governor declined again Friday to comment on the law and why she supported suspending the proficiency requirements.

Brown’s decision was not public until recently, because her office did not hold a signing ceremony or issue a press release and the fact that the governor signed the bill was not entered into the legislative database until July 29, a departure from the normal practice of updating the public database the same day a bill is signed.

The Oregonian/OregonLive asked the governor’s office when Brown’s staff notified the Legislature that she had signed the bill. Charles Boyle, the governor’s deputy communications director, said the governor’s staff notified legislative staff the same day the governor signed the bill.

Boyle said in an emailed statement that suspending the reading, writing and math proficiency requirements while the state develops new graduation standards will benefit “Oregon’s Black, Latino, Latina, Latinx, Indigenous, Asian, Pacific Islander, Tribal, and students of color.”

“Leaders from those communities have advocated time and again for equitable graduation standards, along with expanded learning opportunities and supports,” Boyle wrote.

Lawmakers and the governor did not pass any major expansion of learning opportunities or supports for Black, Indigenous and students of color during this year’s legislative session.

The requirement that students demonstrate freshman- to sophomore-level skills in reading, writing and, particularly, math led many high schools to create workshop-style courses to help students strengthen their skills and create evidence of mastery. Most of those courses have been discontinued since the skills requirement was paused during the pandemic before lawmakers killed it entirely.

Democrats in the legislature overwhelmingly supported ending the longtime proficiency requirement, while Republicans criticized it as a lowering of academic standards. A couple lawmakers crossed party lines on the votes.

Proponents said the state needed to pause Oregon’s high school graduation requirements, in place since 2009 but already suspended during the pandemic, until at least the class of 2024 graduates in order for leaders to reexamine its graduation requirements. Recommendations for new standards are due to the Legislature and Oregon Board of Education by September 2022.

However, since Oregon education officials have long insisted they would not impose new graduation requirements on students who have already begun high school, new requirements would not take effect until the class of 2027 at the very earliest. That means at least five more classes could be expected to graduate without needing to demonstrate proficiency in math and writing.

Much of the criticism of the graduation requirements was targeted at standardized tests. Yet Oregon, unlike many other states, did not require students to pass a particular standardized test or any test at all. Students could demonstrate their ability to use English and do math via about five different tests or by completing an in-depth classroom project judged by their own teachers.

A variety of factors appear to have led to the lack of transparency around the governor’s bill signing decisions this summer. Staff in the secretary of the state Senate’s office are responsible for updating the legislative database when the governor signs a Senate bill. Secretary of the Senate Lori Brocker said a key staffer who deals with the governor’s office was experiencing medical issues during the 15-day period between when Brown signed Senate Bill 744 and the public database was updated to reflect that.

Still, a handful of bills that the governor signed into law on July 19 — including a bill to create a training program for childcare and preschool providers aimed at reducing suspensions and expulsions of very young children — were updated in the legislative database the same day she signed them and email notifications were sent out immediately to people who signed up to track the bills.

No notification ever went out regarding the governor’s signing of the graduation bill. That was because by the time legislative staff belatedly entered the information into the bill database on July 29, the software vendor had shut off bill updates to member of the media and the public who had requested them. They cut it off because of a July 21 system malfunction, said legislative information services Systems Architect Bill Sweeney.

September 11, 2022. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Dumbing down, Education, Social justice warriors. Leave a comment.

This person is “so confused” by the concept of compound interest

https://www.marketwatch.com/picks/im-so-confused-im-a-school-nurse-who-took-out-about-30k-in-student-loans-but-over-the-years-they-have-ballooned-up-to-96k-how-could-this-even-happen-and-what-can-i-do-about-it-01646747369

‘I’m so confused.’ I’m a school nurse who took out about $30K in student loans — but over the years they have ballooned up to $96K. How could this even happen and what can I do about it?

March 9, 2022

Question: I’d like to obtain advice on tackling student loan debt. I do not have private loans, and I owe approximately $96,000. I’m so confused because initially my loans were less than $30,000, but I think the rest of it comes from interest. I’m not sure what I am looking at with my loans. My loans have been in forbearance, and I want to investigate loan forgiveness options. I am a school nurse and support my family, so my income is limited. Can you provide direction? It would be greatly appreciated.

March 9, 2022. Tags: , , , , , , , . Education, Math. Leave a comment.

Oregon Democratic governor Kate Brown signs bill to end reading and math proficiency requirements for high school graduation. Her spokesman, Charles Boyle, said this will help “Black, Latino, Latinx, Indigenous, Asian, Pacific Islander, Tribal, and students of color.”

By Daniel Alman (aka Dan from Squirrel Hill)

August 11, 2021

Oregon’s Democratic governor, Kate Brown, just signed a bill that eliminates the reading and math proficiency requirements for high school graduation in Oregon’s government-run schools.

Brown’s spokesman, Charles Boyle, said this will help “Black, Latino, Latinx, Indigenous, Asian, Pacific Islander, Tribal, and students of color.”

Of course I totally disagree with Boyle. This will not help those students. On the contrary, it will hurt them.

I support high academic standards for students of all races and ethnicities. I hope the parents in Oregon will remove their children from these abominable, dumbed down government-run schools, and send their children to private schools. Not all private schools are expensive. Montessori schools, Marva Collins schools, and Catholic schools have a long term, proven track record of providing an excellent education to minority students, and they do so at a dollar cost that is far less, per student, than what the government-run schools spend on their dumbed down education.

https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/oregon-bill-ending-reading-and-arithmetic-requirements-before-graduation

Oregon governor signs bill ending reading and math proficiency requirements for graduation

By Kaelan Deese

August 10, 2021

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown privately signed a bill last month ending the requirement for high school students to prove proficiency in reading, writing, and arithmetic before graduation.

Brown, a Democrat, did not hold a public signing or issue a press release regarding the passing of Senate Bill 744 on July 14, and the measure, which was approved by lawmakers in June, was not added into the state’s legislative database until more than two weeks later on July 29, an unusually quiet approach to enacting legislation, according to the Oregonian.

Secretary of the Senate Lori Brocker’s office is responsible for updating the legislative database, and a staffer tasked with dealing with the governor’s office was experiencing medical issues during the 15-day time frame it took the database to be updated with the recently signed law, Brocker said.

SB 744 gives us an opportunity to review our graduation requirements and make sure our assessments can truly assess all students’ learning,” Charles Boyle, a spokesman for the governor, said in an email to the Washington Examiner. “In the meantime, it gives Oregon students and the education community a chance to regroup after a year and a half of disruption caused by the pandemic.”

The bill, which suspends the proficiency requirements for students for three years, has attracted controversy for at least temporarily suspending academic standards amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Backers argued the existing proficiency levels for math and reading presented an unfair challenge for students who do not test well, and Boyle said the new standards for graduation would aid Oregon’s “Black, Latino, Latinx, Indigenous, Asian, Pacific Islander, Tribal, and students of color.”

The requirement for students to demonstrate proficiency in essential subjects on a freshman to sophomore skill level in order to graduate was terminated at the start of the pandemic as part of Brown’s Stay Home, Save Lives order in March 2020.

Democrats largely backed the executive order and argued in favor of SB 744’s proposed expansion, saying the existing educational proficiency standards were flawed.

“The testing that we’ve been doing in the past doesn’t tell us what we want to know,” Democratic Sen. Lew Frederick told a local ABC affiliate in June. “We have been relying on tests that have been, frankly, very flawed and relying too much on them so that we aren’t really helping the students or the teachers or the community.”

Supporters of the measure said the state needed to pause the academic requirements, which had been in place since 2009, so lawmakers could reevaluate which standards should be updated, and recommendations for new graduation standards are due to the Legislature and Oregon Board of Education by September 2022, the Oregonian added in its report.

Republicans criticized the proposal for lowering academic standards.

“I worry that by adopting this bill, we’re giving up on our kids,” House Republican Leader Christine Drazan said on June 14.

Still, the measure received some bipartisan support, with state Rep. Gordon Smith, a Republican, voting in favor of passage. The state House passed the bill 38-18 on June 14, and the state Senate voted 16-13 in favor of the measure on June 16.

While some lawmakers argued against standardized testing for skill evaluation, the state of Oregon does not list any particular test as a requirement for earning a diploma, with the Department of Education saying only that “students will need to successfully complete the credit requirements, demonstrate proficiency in the Essential Skills, and meet the personalized learning requirements.”

“Senate Bill 744 does not remove Oregon’s graduation requirements, and it certainly does not remove any requirements that Oregon students learn essential skills,” Boyle said, adding it is “misleading” to conflate the subjects of standardized testing with graduation requirements.

The Washington Examiner contacted the Department of Education but did not immediately receive a response.

August 11, 2021. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , . Dumbing down, Education, Racism, Social justice warriors, War against achievement. 3 comments.

Public schools teach math and science much better when the teachers DON’T have a degree in education

This is from the Wall St. Journal:
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September 17, 2012. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , . Education, Math, Science. Leave a comment.