Reasons Superintendents and School Board Members Give for Purchasing CSCOPE
by Janice VanCleave
Rockwall Superintendent Bailey says that the CSCOPE tool provided many benefits to the district that were lacking. For example:
X 1. CSCOPE was developed by Texas teachers for Texas teachers that brought the pacing needed to cover all the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) curriculum content required by the state.
An X is placed by this reason because it cannot be true. Common sense confirms that it is not possible for the authors of the CSCOPE TEKS schedules called YAGs to have any information about the pacing of the TEKS.
The state standards called TAKS ended May 2010 and the new state standards called TEKS were introduced in Aug. 2010. Thus, the CSCOPE product used in May, 2010 had to be totally rewritten to be aligned with the new TEKS and ready for school in August, 2010.
X 2. CSCOPE also provided additional lesson resources that our teachers could utilize if they were to choose to do so. I would also note that when the administration was proposing CSCOPE there was no controversy surrounding its use by the more than 875 school districts across the state of Texas since 2006. In addition to public schools CSCOPE has been adopted by private schools, charter schools as well as private Christian schools.
This reason also gets an X for lack of originality. “Mom, All the kids are doing it.”
The Rockwall school board president said that Superintendent Bailey reported to the school board that his (Baily’s) leadership team had reviewed the CSCOPE tool along with the region 10 center and the CSCOPE developers.
This means the company selling CSCOPE told the leadership team that their product was great! Did the Rockwall leadership team expect them to say that their product filled with errors or that the science lessons do not correctly represent the science process skills? DUH!
Ed Vara with ESC XIII admits that there is no outside oversight of the CSCOPE Curriculum.
Superintendent Bailey said, “The CSCOPE representative attended our board workshop and participated in the presentations to the board. The board was comfortable that the district had done it due diligence before recommending the tool to the board.”
It is hard to comment on this statement. OF COURSE the CSCOPE representative attended and participated. DUH!!! Again, what did the superintendent think the CSCOPE representative was going to do. Tell the truth?
I have not met any CSCOPE representative that had a clue of the lesson content. In fact, I was told that others review the lessons. The CSCOPE representatives promote and sell. They have a really good sales pitch.
X 3. CSCOPE is inexpensive.
This is absolutely not true. There hidden fees. But this lie comes from the ESCs.
Did ESC- 10 tell Mr. Bailey’s research team that $100 million dollars were provided in 2009 via Rider 42 grant for the purpose of developing TEKS instruction materials for Texas educators K-12.
That’s right. All 20 of the ESCs were given money not only to develop TEKS training but to provide this training at no expense to teachers. In the summer of 2010, teachers were paid a stipend to attend these science, math, and ELAR TEKS professional development academies. How many Rockwall teachers attended?
Following is the amount of money that ESC Region-10 received for the purpose of preparing Rockwall teachers
to understand the TEKS they would be using in 2010-2011 for the first time. Yes! Your Region 10 Education Service Center was given $5,664,515 to develop TEKS materials so that Rockwall teachers would have the scope for the courses they taught as well as enough knowledge about the TEKS to develop their own TEKS schedule that would be aligned with the schools’s calendar.
Let me repeat this: In all, the 20 ESCs received $100 million dollars to develop and present TEKS professional development academies. The objective of these academies was for Texas Educators to have specificities for the TEKS K-12.
|2009 REG X EDUCATION SERVICE CENTER —- 2,618,985|
|2010 REG X EDUCATION SERVICE CENTER — 3,045,533|
Instead of making arrangements for Rockwall teacher to attend the FREE TEKS PD academies, CSCOPE was rented at a fee of $100 thousand dollars per year. This doesn’t include other fees charged.
According to Superintendent Bailey, “The cost to the district to create our own curriculum management tool would be approximately $300K+ per year (this is to create and maintain its own curriculum management tool).”
Does anyone have a clue what a curriculum management tool is? All I have discovered about CSCOPE is that its original goal was to give superintendents and school administrators the tools to micromanage teachers. In fact, CSCOPE’s administration workshops are focused on how to monitor teachers.
According to Superintendent Bailey, due to the state cutting $5B from public school funding two years ago it put school districts across the state in the position to make some very tough decisions. As a direct result of the cuts made by the state legislature the RISD has lost $15.7M dollars of funding over the last two years ($9.3M in year one and $6.4M in year two).
While Rockwall teachers may have been cut and classroom money for classroom supplies decreased, it did not stop Superintendent Bailey and the School Board members from spending school taxes to pay their personal fees and expenses to private organizations called “Texas Association of School Administrators (TASA)” and “Texas Association of School Boards (TASB).” These fees for 2011-2012 and 2012 – through Dec. 2012 is a total of $62,094.25. Which is more important, “Having teachers or for the school administrators and school board members to attend conferences at the expense of tax payers?”
X The Rockwall school board and the administration communicated that:
1. The lessons provided by the CSCOPE tool were optional.
2. Rockwall teachers are free to use their own lessons to present the content required by the TEKS.
3. The Rockwall school board and administration have full confidence in Rockwall classroom teachers and their ability to present the content required and to do so in a manner consistent with the values or our community. RISD has the best teachers in the state of Texas!
These statements get an X because if they were true, Rockwall would not have rented the CSCOPE micromanaging system. If they were true there would be no need to pay for the TEKS scheduling when the Rockwall teachers are more than competent to group the TEKS for their lessons into time frames. If the Rockwall teachers were really respected the administration would have provided the opportunity for them receive the FREE Rider 42 TEKS PD academy materials. The administration can still make these materials available by contacting Region 10 and requesting them.
Also, if CSCOPE was created by teachers for teachers, and the Rockwall administration and school board consider the Rockwall teachers the best in the state of Texas, why buy something that inferior teachers have produced?
FYI: * Rockwall Superintendent Jeff Bailey is listed as being part of the TASA Mission to Transform your schools. What exactly is Bailey trying to change? What are the goals of this transformation? In Feburary the goal of TASA was for Texas administrators to attend a conference in California where Linda Darling-Hammond was speaking on Common Core. TASA specifically said that Texas Superintendents needed to attend to learn how to implement common core into the Texas Schools. Is Superintendent Bailey transforming the Rockwall ISD into a school that will be controlled by the Federal Government. Yes! Texas Schools are independent and yes your superintendent can give this away by implementing common core standards. With these standards come federal money along with federal rules and regulations. Why would any superintendent support this? Superintendents who have pledged to be part of the TASA mission of transforming Texas schools are no longer as concerned about community input. Instead, they are marching to a different drummer called TASA/TASB.