Patti Morgan Talking About Common Core?
Good evening, Board members, Superintendent McCormick, Administrators and teachers,
My name is Patti Morgan. I live in Riverside. I have worked at Val verde since 1986. I have seen a lot of growth and change in Val Verde.
I too have grown and changed a lot. My latest adventure in education is Common Core. This is how it works.
The first claim begins simply with analyzing facts.Depth of Knowledge 1 is recalling facts. This is where we were at the end of school last year.. We heard the facts. We could see that if the District’s proposal was accepted we would be above Perris Elem. District and no one else. If we went with the Union proposal we would be slightly higher and be on par with Hemet. We trusted that the difference would be settled. We trusted that what was taken from us 7 years ago in salary and class size would be restored and not looked at as an increase, but rather a restoration of what was ours.
Claim 2 goes deeper and asks the learner to problem solve and personalize the facts. Depth of Knowledge 2 calls it concept building. As I hear my colleagues across the district talk, conversations always seem to gravitate to our lack of a contract, our class size and, of course, salaries and benefits. Knowing that we were in the top third of the county’s salaries only a few years ago and now are at the bottom is very personal.
The third claim is listening, sharing and interpreting facts.This is where learners support their arguments and critique those made by others. Depth of Knowledge 3 is called Strategic Learning and it is based on communication. As a media driven society, we are networked to teachers all over the country. We talk to teachers making three digit salaries and we realize that they are in neighboring districts…and sadly, their benefits packages are equal to or cost less out of pocket than our own and their class sizes are equal to ours. So, why, we ask ourselves are we making a commute?
This takes us to Claim 4, which is to research and interpret the evidence. Depth of Knowledge 4 is called extended learning and is a call to action. We are now at Claim 4. Teachers have begun to research their own neighborhood districts. They are asking questions like “How many years will you give me? Are there bonuses based upon my years of experience or extensive education? Districts around us, who have previously been in our shadow, are watching and also making changes to their policies in order to hire our best and brightest…those teachers who have trained in the Val Verde Way. Promises are being made.
And so I leave you with this:
Don’t take my word. Do your research. Know your competition. Make your decision accordingly because we are doing the same. If the disparity and the conflict becomes too great, many of us will decide to move on to a district that offers us more. After all, the future lies in the hands of us all.