WE SUPPORT effective, research-based education policies, early childhood development and pre-K programs, full-day Kindergarten, plenty of free play and recess time for small children, small class sizes, active parent involvement, experienced teachers, and evaluation systems that go beyond test scores.
WE DO NOT SUPPORT an over-reliance on standardized testing or using them for high-stakes decisions. This practice is unethical and immoral. It narrows the curriculum for all students, promotes teaching to the test, invites cheating on the test, disenfranchises students with disabilities, penalizes English language learners, and ignores the impact of poverty on young children. This policy unfairly penalizes students, teachers and schools while hurting of our most vulnerable students.
WE SUPPORT adequate and equitable funding for all schools across the state. Rhode Island has still not achieved a fair and adequate level of funding for all districts. Yet, demands are being placed with arbitrary goals without adequate funding, resources or sound methods to achieve those goals. Until this takes place, our schools are unable to make needed changes to allow all students to achieve at their highest level.
WE DO NOT SUPPORT educational policies that continue to ignore the impact of poverty, language barriers or disabilities on a child’s ability to learn. Until policy makers recognize these significant challenges to learning, both the educational gap and the opportunity gap will continue to widen and divide our state into the ‘haves’ and ‘have nots.’ Equal opportunity requires equalized resources.
WE SUPPORT individualized educational goals. Every child has their own gifts and challenges. All students should be encouraged to achieve to their highest abilities and not be held back due to an arbitrary standard based solely on test scores.
WE DO NOT SUPPORT a one size fits all policy of curriculum and standardized tests that ‘dumb down’ education for some and set impossible goals for others. Students should not be punished because a standard is clearly unreasonable for them due to a disability, language barrier or the impact of poverty.
WE SUPPORT a strong parent role in state, local and national education policy. Students, parents and communities are the true stakeholders in education policy making – NOT businesses, politicians and corporations. Parents, students and teachers need a voice in policy for both current educational issues and to form educational goals for the future. Districts should be accountable to students, parents and communities.
WE DO NOT SUPPORT corporate and politically driven reforms that seek to make top-down decisions and policies based on standardized test scores and implement curriculum that is based on corporate employer goals and not individual child development benchmarks.
If you agree, please join us and help us take back our children’s education.