The primary elections are one week away, and our state cannot allow State Superintendent Janet Costello Barresi to make it past June 24.
As I read online newspaper articles about this political race, I always see one or two comments from Costello-Barresi supporters. These people claim that they will vote for the incumbent because she has instituted reform over the course of her tenure.
As Rob Miller stated:
“Let’s be clear. Not a single one of Janet’s policy initiatives is her idea. The A-F grading system, third grade retention, state standards, charter schools and so on are all copied from Jeb Bush and other national reformers. Try to remember ONE innovative practice that Superintendent Barresi has implemented that has a significant effect on teaching and learning in Oklahoma.”
My fellow blogger is correct, Dr. Barresi has failed to implement reform that wasn’t created by a national reformer. It is also important to note that Dr. Barresi’s reform hasn’t proven to be successful in Oklahoma, or anywhere else. Her reform is simply another play which the national reformers have called. Their playbook consists of viewing your children as one dimensional test-takers.
A key piece of corporate takeover is “merit pay” for teachers, which is also called Value Added Model (VAM). Read this honest post from, Blue Cereal Education, titled: Roster Vilification. Teachers will be evaluated based on standardized test results. Some states are even proposing teacher evaluations which are partially based on student survey responses. I don’t know how you feel, but this makes about as much sense to me as the OSDE’s “Roster Verification in a Nutshell” guide. No longer will we be allowed to foster creativity, and provide individualized instructions. We will be even busier making sure that each student is reaching the level that a testing company has deemed appropriate. Janet Barresi will continue to encourage us to create compliant and submissive test-takers. She doesn’t care about the environmental factors in which our students live and our teachers teach. She wants to convince the public that our teachers are “ineffective”! I highly encourage you to read this post: Ineffective Forever, from Peter Greene. Society, your teachers aren’t failing. Rather, the “reformers” are succeeding at convincing the media, and some members of the public, that teachers are failing.
On June 24, we need to support candidates that can create support for meaningful reform through collaboration. Meaningful reform would be something which considers children as multifaceted beings, and not just test-takers. We need to push candidates past the primaries that treat educators like experts in their field.
My friends that are Republicans, please get out and vote for Joy Hoffmeister. We can’t afford to allow Barresi to continue loaning her campaign $1 million, so that she can smear her opponents. Our state cannot allow Barresi to buy another term.
My friends that are Democrats, please get out and vote for someone that is everything Janet Costello Barresi is not. The primary candidates include: John Cox, Freda Deskin, Jack Herron, and Ivan Holmes. Our state needs two qualified candidates going into the general election.
After we have narrowed the field down to two candidates, then we can have the pleasure of debating which person should become our State Superintendent.
If you still have even the slightest thoughts of voting for Janet Costello Barresi, please read this post by a grandmother of three Oklahoma public school students. It is the most important post which I have read recently. It truly reveals the lack of respect and attention which Janet Costello Barresi gives to our students.
Not every student is a child of affluence. Not every student is a child of the middle class. Not every child is free from disability, poverty, or neglectful homes. But, every student deserves respect and attention. Janet Costello Barresi does not provide the respect and attention that the students of Oklahoma deserve.
She must go.
Here are other opinions as to why Janet Costello Barresi must go:
Okeducationtruths: Ignoring Researchers, The A-F Rollout, The 2014 Writing Test Debacle, PASSing Around Our Standards, Learning to Use Reading for Political Gain, and Fabricating Special Education Percentages.
HasselwoodMath: I WILL NOT BE DAMNED!! I TEACH!!
Feel free to comment your own opinions as to why JCB must go!