12/18/14 10:00am
12/18/2014 10:00 AM
From left, Southold Superintendent David Gamberg, district clerk Patti DiGregorio and school board member John Crean at Wednesday's meeting. (Credit: Jen Nuzzo)

From left, Southold Superintendent David Gamberg, district clerk Patti DiGregorio and school board member John Crean at Wednesday’s meeting. (Credit: Jen Nuzzo)

The Southold school board has made an official statement opposing “field tests” tied to the controversial Common Core mandates.

(more…)

09/04/14 10:00am
09/04/2014 10:00 AM
New instructors and new lessons, as well as a longer school day, will mark some changes for 2014-2015 in New Suffolk. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

New instructors and new lessons, as well as a longer school day, will mark some changes for 2014-2015 in New Suffolk. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

Returning New Suffolk students are being met with, well, restructuring this school year. The arrival of two new instructors and the return of a special assignment teacher has forced the tiny three-classroom district to change how classes were being taught.  (more…)

08/21/14 2:15pm
08/21/2014 2:15 PM
JENNIFER GUSTAVSON  FILE PHOTO

JENNIFER GUSTAVSON FILE PHOTO

The New York State Department of Education has released the results of Common Core-aligned math and English Language Arts exams taken this spring by students statewide, and outcomes from local districts fall in line with wider trends.

Those trends pointed to improved scores in math overall, with ELA results generally falling or staying flat.

Statewide, proficiency rates (the number of students scoring at levels 3 and 4) increased more in math than in English. In 2013, 31.2 percent of students achieved proficiency on the math exam; that number jumped to 35.8 percent in 2014. In English, the proficiency rate ticked up one-tenth of a percent, to 31.4 percent.

The tests were — and remain — a source of conflict for many parents and teachers throughout the state. Part of New York’s Common Core State Standards, state legislators delayed some of the impacts the tests have in evaluating teacher performance in reaction to opposition from the public. The standards came after New York opted into the federal program, which supplies the state with education funds otherwise not available.

This year’s results provided the first opportunity to compare students’ test performance in consecutive years. Educators with the state’s Board of Regents, which has been implementing Common Core, said that despite what some may consider low proficiency levels – numbers that opponents say defeat the students taking the tests — long-term, the plan is going as scheduled.

“This is still a transition period,” said New York State Board of Regents Chancellor Meryl Tisch. “It will take time before the changes taking place in our classrooms are fully reflected in the test scores.”

This year’s results are below:

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08/16/14 8:00am
08/16/2014 8:00 AM
Assemblyman Anthony Palumbo (right) and Senator Ken LaValle at a Common Core forum last year in Eastport. (Credit: Carrie Miller, file)

Assemblyman Anthony Palumbo (right) and Senator Ken LaValle at a Common Core forum last year in Eastport. (Credit: Carrie Miller, file)

Common Core is a federal government power grab disguised as a “revamping” of our nation’s educational system — an educational system that, with all its flaws, managed to produce people who put a man on the moon and gave the world the Internet.  (more…)

08/03/14 12:00pm
08/03/2014 12:00 PM
Assemblyman Anthony Palumbo (right) at a Common Core forum last year in Eastport. (Credit: Carrie Miller, file)

Assemblyman Anthony Palumbo (right) at a Common Core forum last year in Eastport. (Credit: Carrie Miller, file)

There may be another party line on the November ballot for state office seekers.

Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino, the GOP challenger facing Governor Andrew Cuomo in the upcoming election, has launched a petition effort to establish a Stop Common Core party line focused on capturing voters unhappy with the controversial Common Core State Standards initiative.  (more…)

05/08/14 6:00am
05/08/2014 6:00 AM
Southold School District Superintendent David Gamberg .

Southold School District Superintendent David Gamberg. (Credit: Jennifer Gustavson, file)

To the editor:

Southold School District Superintendent David Gamberg has been an outspoken critic of the Common Core Learning Standards implementation and its testing requirements. So his expressed desire to apply “common sense” to education is not surprising.

But hey, it’s common sense to put things back where you found them. But why, then, are shopping carts all over the parking lot at the end of a market day?  (more…)

05/02/14 6:00am
05/02/2014 6:00 AM
David Gamberg during a school board meeting in Southold. (Credit: Jennifer Gustavson, file)

David Gamberg during a school board meeting in Southold. (Credit: Jennifer Gustavson, file)

What would make the most sense about developing and promoting the necessary ingredients for a high-quality public education system in the United States? Would it be an agenda made up of the highest standards possible? Of course, but in and of itself this would fall short of a full-bodied agenda for success. (more…)

04/02/14 3:30pm
04/02/2014 3:30 PM
Mattituck-Cutchogue School District residents gathered Wednesday at the elementary school for a Common Core presentation. (Credit: Jennifer Gustavson)

The Mattituck-Cutchogue School District held a Common Core meeting last month at the elementary school. (Credit: Jennifer Gustavson)

Some local schools saw unexpected surges in the number of students declining to participate Tuesday in the first of three days of state English Language Arts assessments.

What’s known as the opt-out movement is being pushed by parents, and educators statewide continue to protest so-called high-stakes testing tied to the controversial Common Core State Standards. (more…)