tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post5205693293804147336..comments2019-01-20T13:45:04.376-05:00Comments on DeKalb County School Watch: So, Shayna was right!Cerebrationhttp://www.blogger.com/profile/11161868015604029471noreply@blogger.comBlogger44125tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-61729409762513485032010-07-30T17:23:43.484-04:002010-07-30T17:23:43.484-04:00Lots of luck attracting quality math teachers to D...Lots of luck attracting quality math teachers to DCSS. What has DCSS's administration done to attract and retain quality math instructors? This is a question parents/taxpayers should be emailing Ms. Tyson and the BOE about. <br /><br />I certainly hope their answer is not "put more pressure on them" or "require them to go to complete more in services". If you want quality personnel, you must prove attractive to quality personnel. This is something they can't seem to wrap their minds around.Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-3571288169082980402010-07-30T17:15:48.671-04:002010-07-30T17:15:48.671-04:00"Shayna researched the topic diligently and c..."Shayna researched the topic diligently and came to the conclusion that, while the curriculum is a good one at it's core, it is very difficult to teach and requires an incredible amount of teacher training. She further noted that although Cobb and Gwinnett chose to layer the new curriculum over the old a piece at a time, DeKalb instead chose to go in "whole hog"......the program was implemented - "all in" - anyway."<br /><br />Is it just me or does this remind anyone else of the eSis rollout?Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-15067160904625502382010-05-21T10:10:35.721-04:002010-05-21T10:10:35.721-04:00To reiterate -- Shayna really was right!
Check ou...To reiterate -- Shayna really was right!<br /><br />Check out this latest post at the AJC's Get Schooled Blog -<br /><br /><a href="http://blogs.ajc.com/get-schooled-blog/2010/05/21/the-states-new-math-%E2%80%9Ckids-are-failing-left-and-right/" rel="nofollow">The state’s new math program: “Kids are failing left and right”</a><br /><br />Looks like Kathy Cox is leaving the state just in time to save face. This new curriculum itself may in fact be "all that", however, it appears that teachers were not fully trained to teach it - and students are paying the price.Cerebrationhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/11161868015604029471noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-28539834624526858392010-01-16T11:35:31.469-05:002010-01-16T11:35:31.469-05:00Thank you for your support (to all of you who supp...Thank you for your support (to all of you who supported me -- I really do appreciate you). I sometimes wonder about my decision to run in the first place. I think that it is very important that there is a majority (5) people on the Board that really understand concepts like "fiduciary duty": to all citizens of Dekalb County regarding the school system's use of taxpayer money and the responsibilty they have to use it wisely and to all of the students in the DeKalb System -- that they are really there for all children in the system and not just those in their district or part of their district; "conflict of interests" (need I say more?) and "civic duty" -- this is not a job it is public service. Perhaps with a majority who understand these concepts, we could pull away from Clayton territory and start really focusing on spending taxpayer money wisely to really educate the kids. Good luck in working together to get the "good ones" the rest of their majority (there are good ones on the Board, they just need help).Shaynanoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-15957069845995665062010-01-12T11:52:43.335-05:002010-01-12T11:52:43.335-05:00Shayna Steinfeld, please, please, please run again...Shayna Steinfeld, please, please, please run again for the Board of Education. We really, really need you to serve. Things would have been so much better with people like Shayna, Ernest Brown, Ella or Marshall Orson on the BOE. We are heading into Clayton County territory with the current board and superintendent.<br /><br />Trust me on this: We are going to lose many, many quality veteran teachers at the end of this school year. I've heard it time and time again for our teachers. It's a combination of things, but eSIS and the Crawford salary and expense account increase capped it off.<br /><br />We aren't going to lose any administrators, because they have it made with made up positions in which they are only mildly productive in.<br /><br />But lord bless our children, because they are going to be taught by hundreds of rookie teachers in DCSS schools in August 2010.Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-28012333748974309662010-01-12T11:50:31.783-05:002010-01-12T11:50:31.783-05:00Yikes! That is very relevant input, Anon. Thanks f...Yikes! That is very relevant input, Anon. Thanks for posting it here. We like real data.Cerebrationhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/11161868015604029471noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-72785532737149850162010-01-12T10:48:31.540-05:002010-01-12T10:48:31.540-05:00The DCSS high school math posttest benchmark is a ...The DCSS high school math posttest benchmark is a score of 80. When the teachers start a new unit (chapter) they give a pretest, a mid-unit test and a posttest. All scores are expected at the DCSS offices by a deadline depending on the unit covered. Lakeside's Math I - 9th grade - two recent units posttest scores were both 70. The Accelerated Math I class posttests scores - 79 and 81 (same units as regular Math I). The Math II (10th grd) 2 units covered scored 74 & 78on the posttests, Accelerated Math II posttests scored 78 & 77 (same units as reg. Math II). With 8 posttests being given only one posttest made the county's benchmark score. If this is happening at "high achieving" Lakeside one can imagine what the scores look like at schools that are stuggling. Will the county lower their expectations and change the benchmark score? An additional problem of the "new" math is appearing in the sciences. The concepts needed to solve problems in physical science appparently aren't covered in Math I. The students are now stuggling in science as well. With test reporting deadlines for math the teachers & students aren't afforded the opportunity needed to step back and review where the breakdown in knowledge occurred. What a huge mess!Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-29715075934839969882010-01-12T10:02:42.528-05:002010-01-12T10:02:42.528-05:00Time to put the house on the market and move to Fu...Time to put the house on the market and move to Fulton. I pulled my child out of DCSS & into private when the new math was implemented. My child's math knowledge was so convoluted that this semester he is taking two math classes; geometry and the 2nd half of algebra I. Had to fill in the gaps from the "new" math.Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-56853061514552205172010-01-12T06:53:03.799-05:002010-01-12T06:53:03.799-05:00Interesting read on those pesky "graduation t...Interesting read on those pesky "graduation tests". Are they really worth it? Could the state save a lot of money in the education budget by doing away with them? <br /><br />I realize I am old, :), but I did not have to pass a test to graduate - my 5 years of grades were good enougth.<br /><br />http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/34818318/ns/us_news-the_new_york_times//Dunwoody Momhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/05515215184962897541noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-7372902150535060982010-01-12T06:52:15.832-05:002010-01-12T06:52:15.832-05:00This comment has been removed by the author.Dunwoody Momhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/05515215184962897541noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-12794108391961740772010-01-09T13:58:19.421-05:002010-01-09T13:58:19.421-05:00I am thankful my son is not on the Math I track.
...I am thankful my son is not on the Math I track. <br /><br />My students are confused and need much more direct instruction. <br /><br />Shayna is correct. Georgia should not be designing its own math curriculum when so many other states have successful programs that have put them as the top math producers in the country. Ga. needs to spend time getting ideas from a successful program that has results verses going and spending torns of money that this state's education department and state could have used more wisely for our children.<br /><br />When looking at decisions made, I believe it is important to determine if the decision was good for our children. Apparently this decision was not good for many of our students so it was a bad decision.<br /><br />EllaAnonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-34431653452136307292010-01-08T12:40:37.757-05:002010-01-08T12:40:37.757-05:00"Review" was the wrong word to use, but ..."Review" was the wrong word to use, but she had no problem with Math 1 in 9th grade. Maybe I just assumed that taking the accelerated math in 8th grade helped with her with Math 1. <br /><br />We'll see how Math II goes.Dunwoody Momhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/05515215184962897541noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-34511548923027593312010-01-08T12:35:16.668-05:002010-01-08T12:35:16.668-05:00Dunwoody Mom, I bet your older child's experie...Dunwoody Mom, I bet your older child's experience will be better than that of Shayna's son. A high school teacher who has taught Geometry or Algebra 2 for years will have a solid awareness of the course content and how to explain it, and the new math will simply be a different teaching technique with topics in a different order. On the other hand a middle school teacher won't have that background knowledge to draw on when teaching the geometry component of Accelerated Math 1, especially the first year.<br /><br />Still, it's worrisome that your sophomore found 9th grade math (Accelerated Math 1?) to be a review of the so-called Hybrid Algebra 1 offered in 8th grade in 2007-2008. According to the curriculum charts, Math 1 and Accelerated Math 1 especially focus on geometry. The charts say Algebra 1 content is mainly covered in middle school, with the only overlap between Algebra 1 and Math 1 supposedly being "Radical, polynomial, and rational expressions; quadratic, rational, and radical equations"Anon@11:54noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-78096820885307705702010-01-08T12:10:01.191-05:002010-01-08T12:10:01.191-05:00Oh, I know that my kids are lucky to have their &q...Oh, I know that my kids are lucky to have their "Math Dad" around. I'm sure we would be spending large amounts of tutoring, if not - at least for my 8th grader. I know that many students are struggling with Math and the cost of outside tutors is prohibitive. As far as homework, 8th grader has Math homework maybe 2 or 3 nights. However, I'm not a parent who supports children so much homework each night that they cannot participate in outside activities, so I find that to be balanced approach. <br /><br />The jury is still out with regards to my 10th grader. She took the accelerated Math 2nd semester in <br />8th grade and did very well, but we chose not to go the accelerated path in high school, so basically, 9th grade Math was a review for her and she did well. Her PSAT scores have been excellent, as well. She just may "get" Math like her Dad. I think this semester will be the test, though. Because of the block, she did not have Math first semester, so I'll be keeping a close eye on her Math. <br /><br />I am keeping my finger crossed that with DHS going to a modified block that Math will become year-round starting this fall.Dunwoody Momhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/05515215184962897541noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-43722546936443535442010-01-08T12:06:37.145-05:002010-01-08T12:06:37.145-05:00I hope those meetings are better than the informat...I hope those meetings are better than the informational math meeting offered at our high school in 2008-2009. Topics pretty much look the same, though. County math staff compared GPS with QCC and explained standards-based math by demonstrating a mini-lesson. We were told that the new math was more "rigorous." Concerns were dismissed with the standard answers.Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-40100461050728902252010-01-08T11:59:01.131-05:002010-01-08T11:59:01.131-05:00Wow. Good find, Kim. I wonder why this information...Wow. Good find, Kim. I wonder why this information is not available at the school system's website?<br /><br />This deserves a post of it's own.Cerebrationhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/11161868015604029471noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-46659587871098451262010-01-08T11:54:21.453-05:002010-01-08T11:54:21.453-05:00Dunwoody Mom, it is great that your child is doing...Dunwoody Mom, it is great that your child is doing well, your teacher gives homework, and your husband can tutor. However a course grade or Georgia test doesn't mean as much as it should. Sounds like you're definitely on the right track, but the real test will be whether your child also does well on the PSAT and SAT and has the background to succeed in AP or college math courses if she or he takes them. Another thing that shines a spotlight on gaps is when our students practice for math competitions against other schools statewide and nationwide. Unfortunately math team isn't offered at most Dekalb schools.<br /><br />My daughter is a sophomore this year, so she was on the leading edge of the new math curriculum. Math had always been part of our home life, but the summer before her 8th grade year I was concerned enough to bribe her to work through an Algebra I study book we picked up at the bookstore.<br /><br />As it turned out, she got some traditional Algebra I instruction at school after all. The biggest piece of luck I'm grateful for is that the 2007-2008 cohort of 8th graders was allowed the option of accelerating into the old curriculum (thanks to parent pressure, I believe). She chose that path because she felt her integrated middle school math classes were "watered down," and has had no regrets despite the inconvenience of being required to take 2 math classes in 9th grade.<br /><br />Unfortunately most Dekalb students can't opt out, nor do they have math major parents like Dunwoody Dad.Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-33280840616695467572010-01-08T11:45:59.155-05:002010-01-08T11:45:59.155-05:00Dunwoody Mom, did your student have actual homewor...Dunwoody Mom, did your student have actual homework every night?<br /><br />That's likely one of the key differences. My child's team math teacher does not give nightly homework - just the two-a-week online "assessments." We have to decipher what is covered in class, try to reinforce it with found materials (workbooks, my older student's old algebra book), etc.<br /><br />My student scored an A, too, thanks to our support. But that isn't the case for many, many students. They don't have the parent resources.Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-58793604948850895742010-01-08T11:10:13.107-05:002010-01-08T11:10:13.107-05:00Well, I'll brag - my 8th grader made a high &q...Well, I'll brag - my 8th grader made a high "A" on the Math final last semester. Of course, I will admit that my husband spent a lot of time helping with Math homework - which was just about every night. <br /><br />I guess my children been lucky, so I'll count my blessings and hope it continuesDunwoody Momhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/05515215184962897541noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-39019343355981693332010-01-08T11:08:42.582-05:002010-01-08T11:08:42.582-05:00This comment has been removed by the author.Dunwoody Momhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/05515215184962897541noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-52444266501114573612010-01-08T11:06:13.947-05:002010-01-08T11:06:13.947-05:00Thanks Kim! This info has not been given to paren...Thanks Kim! This info has not been given to parents, but I will put into my classroom newsletter. I hope that parents go in droves and question, question, question.Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-44823927233263397802010-01-08T11:02:26.433-05:002010-01-08T11:02:26.433-05:00I have no experience and claim no insight on this ...I have no experience and claim no insight on this subject. However, I did see this AM a venue for those interested in this issue. "Registration" is via Survey Monkey site. Take this valuable "virtual" discussion to the upcoming DCSS "Math Community Meetings" - see:<br /><br /><a href="http://www.communityradar.com/story.php?title=dekalb-schools-communty-math-meetings" rel="nofollow">DeKalb Schools Communty Math Meetings</a><br /><br>Kim Gokcehttps://www.blogger.com/profile/01855554437157990110noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-22421995548310947902010-01-08T10:58:50.002-05:002010-01-08T10:58:50.002-05:00So, children explore concepts such as coordinate p...So, children explore concepts such as coordinate planes, "discover" the formulas and how to solve the equations, and do this in class. No homework needed.<br /><br />Nope. Not working.<br /><br />The semester final in math at my kid's school was very telling. Many, many students failed. Most barely passed. That's because they hadn't understood the concepts in the first place, had no reinforcement at home outside of two-a-week five-question mental math practices online, and had no tests to study by because the teachers keep them for the students' portfolios (in other words, they like to use the same tests over and over again, so don't want them going home). <br /><br />Not just my kid's math teacher, either.Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-48589025955488550212010-01-08T10:22:41.741-05:002010-01-08T10:22:41.741-05:00Your children do not have homework because the cur...Your children do not have homework because the curriculum people have read research that homework doesn't really help students learn. This idea came from a book in education-sorry I cannot remember the name, because I thought it was bull. Therefore teachers are discouraged to give homework. This is why only 5% of a child's grade is homework.Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-151096942903989101.post-89355474582555209922010-01-08T10:08:13.262-05:002010-01-08T10:08:13.262-05:00What's incredibly frustrating is the complete ...What's incredibly frustrating is the complete lack of response from teachers and administrators. I and many parents have asked, over and over again, why our students don't have pencil homework, why morning tutorials don't help students master concepts covered hastily in class (the teacher is often absent, despite scheduling tutoring with students), why the school isn't providing resources for students who are floundering in math. <br /><br />Peachtree Middle School has a Math Night coming up when a DCSS math specialist is supposed to explain the curriculum and teachers are to answer questions. (I don't know the date, but it may be in the school's e-news soon.) I think that's a great forum for giving that DCSS rep some solid feedback on the curriculum's failures. <br /><br />Not that I expect it to go anywhere, but parents must speak up and we need to get our feedback documented.Anonymousnoreply@blogger.com