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Danbury Delegation, House GOP Force Public Hearing on Common Core and Evaluations

Hartford- State Representatives Jan Giegler (R-138), David Scribner (R-107), and Dan Carter (R-2) and Richard Smith (R-108) joined fellow House Republican lawmakers today and filed a petition to force the legislature’s Education Committee to hold a public hearing on bills related to the Common Core curriculum and teacher evaluations.

By utilizing a seldom used petitioning process called Joint Rule 11, House Republican lawmakers were able to gather the required 51 signatures to force a public hearing. The petition will allow two bills relating to the Common Core Curriculum and teacher evaluations to be raised. Previous efforts to request a public hearing were denied by the Chairs of the Education committee.

“The issues surrounding the implementation of the Common Core curriculum and teacher evaluations is too important to be pushed through without input from the teachers, parents and administrators who will be directly impacted,” Rep. Giegler said. “Educational standard changes affect nearly every family in our state and the people have a right to be heard.”

“We’ve heard a unified outcry from teachers, school boards, administrators and parents that the Common Core curriculum and teacher evaluation system is overly burdensome and stifling to teaching and learning,” Rep. Scribner said. “We need to do right by our educators by allowing their voices to be heard on this important issue.”

“The Common Core curriculum and evaluation system is too restrictive, making it difficult for educators to teach effectively and putting up barriers to children learning,” Rep. Carter said. “This public hearing is a promising first step as we make a genuine effort to include teachers in the conversation and improve this flawed system.”

“Many parents and educators have reached out to me with concerns about the Common Core curriculum and they deserve the right to be heard by the Education Committee,” Rep. Smith said.

The House Republican caucus also proposed two bills which would freeze implementation of the curriculum and also create a subcommittee to revamp the evaluation process.

Proposed Bill No. 5078, authored by Rep. Marilyn Giuliano (R-23), would freeze the implementation of the Common Core curriculum for further study until all stakeholders have time to examine its potential effects and reduce classroom evaluations for teachers.

Proposed Bill No. 5331, put forth by the House Republican caucus, calls for the creation of  subcommittee of classroom teachers to discuss and share their issues involving the teacher evaluation program, reduces the number of formal classroom evaluations to one per school year, reduces the amount of goals to be established by each teacher, streamlines data management, and perhaps most importantly, enables the exclusion of student scores on statewide mastery tests, including the Smarter Balanced assessment test, from being factored into a teacher’s evaluation.

A time and date for the hearings has not been set yet.

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