President and CEO and Harlem fave Arva Rice of New York Urban League was present to testify at Governor Cuomo’s first ever Common Core Task Force.
The task force, which was created to review the implementation of the standards in New York, saw Arva along with a dozen or so other speakers and about a hundred people pack into the Laguardia Community College conference room.
Arva’s testimony highlighted the failure of the state to address the achievement gap in minority communities and how the new standards were a step forward to addressing the problem. Arva also touched on how data and high standards had been used throughout the civil rights community to provide a clear map about the inequality faced by millions of students throughout the country. She finished her testimony by challenging the community to “opt-in” and not to return to the former education system which was not addressing the lack of academic and economic opportunity-faced by so many low income minority families.
When asked by Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan about her thoughts on assessments Arva responded with “Assessments happen in everyday life no matter what profession you are in. Although I may question the number of test students are given each year-assessments provide a meaningful way to judge whether the system created is putting all students on the path to college and career readiness”.
The six year President of the New York Urban League was not alone in her support of the standards at the hearing, Stephen Sigmund of High Achievement New York, Evan Stone of Educators for Excellence, and some 50 parents from Students First were also in attendance: giving the pro-common core audience a solid majority at the hearing.
Those interested in the learning more about the task force should visit http://www.nyul.org/.