Accountability, more dialogue needed on new grading system

We need accountability from the Moscow School District board and Superintendent Greg Bailey. Specifically, the following: 1. An immediate halt to implementation of radical changes in the way our children are taught and graded, including use of the “TeacherEase” software; 2. Job protection for any MSD staff who would like to share their opinions on the matter in an appropriate forum; 3. A special meeting open to the public be held with appropriate notice, and ongoing dialogue with the community.

We are not willing to let MSD experiment with our children’s futures. Our district agreed to be an “incubator site” without the consent of the community, and has been paid through grant money to conduct this experiment on our children.

These changes include abolishing letter and percentage grades, recreating traditional GPAs for college transcripts at Moscow High School, allowing unlimited “do-overs” of tests and homework, making standards subjective and discretionary, and placing unprecedented burdens on our teachers.

Mastery based learning has admirable goals and is surely useful in certain settings and individual situations.

However, like most utopian schemes there are always unintended consequences and this is anything but settled science.

The process surrounding MSD’s 2015 accreditation goals was hijacked by individuals here and in Boise who wanted to enact their own agendas and theories, behind closed doors and through biased paid consultants.

A deeper and objective analysis of these changes and how they have affected other districts who implemented them is necessary before we travel further down this road. Parents should have the final say in the education of their children, and the district’s communication on such major changes has been inexcusably absent.

If you would like to learn more or share your opinion, please email MSDStandards@gmail.com.

Dale T. Miller

Moscow

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