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Contact him about KEEPING the SPED/MCAS SECTION 635
*******Below is Joe O'Sullivan's letter to Mitt -- use any or all content for your communication with Mitt.
Please keep the SPED section 635. Two years ago, the current practice caused 23 teachers in Brockton to spend up to 60 hours of additional work demonstrating that children with IQ's as low as 30 couldn't pass MCAS! The school system had to: 1.pay for the extra time. 2. add an extra $30,000 permanent substitute position so that now, on the basis of for every two students tested, a substitute will be made available for one day so that the ridiculous paper and photo documentation can be completed. 3. Paraprofessionals were also trained and provided to enter computer information for nonverbal students. (These were all unfunded mandates!!)
1. Only ONE of 700 10th grade students tested that year, statewide, passed.
2. The practice constitutes "Child Abuse", under MA Chap. 51A, because the hours spent in testing to determine only to what degree a child has failed puts the child "at risk" under 51A.
3. "Life skills" students in particular need 100% of the available class time to learn and reinforce "Life Skills". The large amount of testing time hurts them by taking away needed learning time trying to demonstrate photographically that a child with an IQ of 30, recognizes that a whole ice cube, and a partially melted ice cube, and a puddle, are related to the "change in state" science framework!!!!!
Last, as a TAXPAYER, parent, and teacher if you are sincere about cutting waste in government this is a great place to start...it saves money and helps students!
Joseph A. O'Sullivan