February is DOOM, aka Delaware Opt Out Month! How To Opt Your Child Out of Smarter Balanced

Parental Opt-Out of Standardized Testing

I wrote most of this last October when I created DOOM: Delaware Opt Out Month.  This was five months before the Smarter Balanced Assessment will come out, so it was probably too soon.  Now, things are different.  Since I wrote this, the Delaware DOE has tried to trick parents with a threatening letter telling them they are breaking the law if they opt their child out.  In Sunday School, they called this A LIE!!!!

This test starts in 35 days.  Delaware parents, you have 35 days to opt your child out of the Smarter Balanced test.  And it is COMPLETELY LEGAL for you to do so.  There is NO law on the books that says you can’t.  The Delaware Department of Education and your local school district, charter, magnet or vocational school may say you can’t or you are breaking the law.  But guess what?  They have NO legal ground, and they know it.

In the meantime, the Delaware PTA is sponsoring two Parent Opt Out Town Halls in the next 30 days.  While this organization doesn’t have a stand on the issue, mostly based on the fact that their national organization hasn’t supported the opt out movement, they are certainly willing to bring parents together to talk about it.  This makes them my new friend!

I’ve taken the liberty of creating Facebook groups for each school district in Delaware.  This way parents can get together and plan opt-out strategies together.  I suggest going to the school board meeting in your district for the month of February, speak for 20 seconds about who your child or children are, that you want them to opt out, and give an opt out letter to the school board president.

What do you need to do?  Join your district opt out group on Facebook, and SPREAD THE WORD. Tell your friends, tell your neighbors, tell your enemies, tell anyone who will listen!  Just talk about it.  If you want to be really radical, tell people at church, put flyers on windshields at your local grocery store, give them to parents at school sporting events, just do SOMETHING!  Because if you do nothing, nothing will happen.  Share this link on Facebook, put it on Twitter, Instagram, Tunblr, wherever you can!  Make opt out Valentine’s Day cards for the parents of your child’s classmates!

To get a quick link to all the Facebook groups for each district, just go to this list:

Appoquinimink: https://www.facebook.com/groups/811176278901676/

Brandywine: https://www.facebook.com/groups/750657841672044/

Caesar Rodney: https://www.facebook.com/groups/330217710494265/

Cape Henlopen: https://www.facebook.com/groups/358626120965599/

Capital: https://www.facebook.com/groups/capitaloptout/

Christina: https://www.facebook.com/groups/739051449503566/

Colonial: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1492448737676855/

Delmar: https://www.facebook.com/groups/659590697473347/

Indian River: https://www.facebook.com/groups/343734129141847/

Lake Forest: https://www.facebook.com/groups/328549060664391/

Laurel: https://www.facebook.com/groups/375501729267620/

Milford: https://www.facebook.com/groups/578841975553978/

New Castle County Vo-Tech: https://www.facebook.com/groups/703996539678113/

Polytech: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1491857177767603/

Red Clay Consolidated: https://www.facebook.com/groups/290247144492167/

Seaford: https://www.facebook.com/groups/557562024345929/

Smyrna: https://www.facebook.com/groups/640600302723389/

Sussex Tech: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1522571074626892/

Woodbridge: https://www.facebook.com/groups/556125087864842/

All Charter Schools in Delaware: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1477351309213561/

If you want to know all the reasons why Common Core is bad for your child, I highly recommend joining this group:

Delaware Against Common Core: https://www.facebook.com/groups/157115501116902/

I will also keep this in my menu guide with links below the title of this blog.

It’s past time parents started taking their children’s education back and helped to get rid of Common Core and standardized testing once and for all.  It will never happen if you do nothing.  It is controversial, and it will piss people off, but if enough of us do it, things will change.  This test and punish agenda has gone on long enough.  The only way to stop this insanity is to speak with our voices loud and clear!

There will be more priority schools in our state.  This will happen every year and they will base this solely on standardized assessment scores.  With Smarter Balanced, the field test scores came in and they were horrible.  The vast majority of students who took it weren’t able to get a proficient score on it.  Is this something you want in your child’s permanent record?  The DOE has already said schools will be low for the next FEW YEARS.  If it takes a FEW YEARS, it isn’t the kids who aren’t proficient, it’s the test.  This is also a test where if you get the wrong answer, you can still get a right answer.  But you can get a right answer but if you don’t explain it the right way, you will have a wrong answer.  Tell me parents, how will that help your child in college or in the real world?  It won’t.  They want to dumb down our kids to push their own agendas.

Parents aren’t the only ones thinking opt out is a good choice, so you are not alone on this if you are already leaning towards it.  It’s a big choice, I understand.  Some may ask if I’ve opted my own son out.  Yes I did.  I did it through a letter to the editor in the Delaware State News, which posted on October 7th, 2014.  But if that isn’t sufficient, I spoke at the October Capital Board meeting, and I will do what I am asking every parent of a student in Delaware to do at a board meeting.  It is actually a relief once you do it, like a great weight has been lifted.  Yes, you will get grief for it, but your kid won’t have to take the test. Whatever your differences, wherever you come from, what you do, who you are- none of that matters.  It’s what’s best for our children.

Please go and join the Facebook page for your district.  I will stay on as admin until things get up and running, and then if you want to be an admin just let me know!  Thank you Delaware parents, and please do the right thing for your child.