Common Core critics named to advisory group

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A Common Core critic, Long Island's member of the Board of Regents, was named Thursday to a group that will figure out ways to fix the program, the state chancellor said.

Regent Roger Tilles has supported Common Core, but bashed related issues, such as the controversial teacher evaluation system that for the first time links their ratings to student performance.

Chancellor Merryl Tisch, who attended public forums at which parents and teachers said the program harmed children's emotional well-being and failed to safeguard student data, also named another critic, Regent Kathleen M. Cashin, who represents Brooklyn.

Tisch, noting Common Core is halfway through its seven-year phase-in, in a statement said: "We anticipated that adjustments and refinements would be necessary."

The new group will report back to the board so it can take up its proposals in February.

Tisch announced this initiative on Monday after 20 public forums at which Education Commissioner John B. King Jr. drew numerous complaints about too many initiatives -- revamping of curricula, stiffening testing and teacher evaluations.

The new group will analyze how policies used by schools that are successfully enacting Common Core might be duplicated by their peers.

And it will delve into how optional curriculum materials were developed -- and the role of state educators. Critics have faulted the lack of input from New York experts.

Professional development policies to help teachers instruct the Common Core also will be studied.

The regents have asked the federal government for testing waivers for special needs children and nonnative English speakers, and the group will look at modifying these.

Professional development policies to help teachers instruct the Common Core will be studied.

The group's other members are: Chancellor Emeritus Robert Bennett and three other regents, James Dawson, James Tallon and Wade Norwood, chair.

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