GOP Gubernatorial Candidate' Rob Astorino's Family Opts Out of Common Core Testing

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GOP Gubernatorial Candidate' Rob Astorino's Family Opts Out of Common Core Testing

March 31, 2014 - 16:19

Rob Astorino Education Announcement - March 31, 2014 from Rob Astorino on Vimeo.

"Tomorrow, hundreds of thousands of New York children, from third through eighth grade, will arrive at school and be told to serve as Guinea Pigs in one of the most untested education experiments in U.S. history.

"They'll be instructed to sit and take Andrew Cuomo's Common Core exam, which New York parents, teachers and children alike do...not...want.

"After speaking at length with my wife Sheila, who's a special education teacher, I am announcing today that my children will join with thousands of other school kids tomorrow, statewide, in refusing to take the Cuomo Common Core test. They will be in school, but they will opt out of the exam, as is their legal right.

"Cuomo's Common Core is a disaster in the making: No k-12 teachers were involved in developing its standards, yet our schools are being turned on their heads to force this experimental program to become the new curriculum. Once this happens, New York parents and teachers will lose local control over our children's classrooms. And our schools will effectively become centralized, organs of the federal government.

"This massively expensive experiment will drive New York property taxes -- already the highest in the nation -- through the roof within a few short years.

"You know where Cuomo's Common Core came from? It came from Bill Gates -- the computer guy -- who is theorizing on what's best for our country's future. Yes, this massive disruption to our classrooms is purely speculative.

"Surely it was tested on a wide scale somewhere, you ask -- right?

"Nope. This IS the test. Our kids are the test, yours and mine.

"You know what Bill Gates said when asked if Common Core would work?

"'We don't know if it will work,'he admitted. 'Maybe we'll know in 10 years.'

"That's easy for him to say. His kids went to elite private schools that will not use Common Core. Same goes for Mr. Cuomo's state education commissioner. He's willing to experiment with our kids, while his go to private school. If Cuomo's Common Core is so good, why won't he let his children take it?

"Common Core didn't come from parents. It didn't come from teachers or school administrators. It came from Gates and, later, Washington bureaucrats -- the geniuses who brought us Obamacare.

"Andrew Cuomo ate it up, calling it "state-of-the-art." New York fast-tracked Common Core, handing over the keys to our children's classrooms without any knowledge of whether it would help or hurt our kids.

"You know why? Albany wanted the federal dollars, which will soon run out.

"We're risking our children's futures for a few scraps from Washington.

"Many parents have already discovered that Common Core math for our youngest children wasn't developed properly. Sheila and I have sat at our kitchen table countless nights with our children, who were frustrated to tears by math methods that left us all scratching our heads.

"We don't coddle our children. We are demanding parents with high standards and expectations. But from what we have seen so far, Cuomo's Common Core may be damaging their education, not helping it.

"Many experts now agree that Cuomo Common Core may actually lower standards for our school children over time, just like the SAT tests, which are being dumbed down next year to align with Common Core.

"We don't need lower standards in our schools; we need higher standards, which I will bring as governor of New York. Higher standards, with local control -- with actual input from parents and teachers.

"What we are seeing now is an expensive, experimental federal curriculum being forced down our throats by Washington and Albany. Sheila and I don't accept that as parents. And as governor, I'll stop it.

"Our family's protest tomorrow is a symbolic one. But as parents we think it's important to take a stand. Our children aren't Guinea Pigs, Governor Cuomo, and we want them educated by teachers - not faceless bureaucrats in Washington."