Teague: PARCC opt-out movement isn’t just a white suburban thing | Paterson Times Paterson Times

Teague: PARCC opt-out movement isn’t just a white suburban thing

By Corey Teague
Published: April 11, 2016


I read an article today from The New York Times. It basically used the race card to categorize those who are involved in the opt-out movement. I need to clarify something for the NY Times and all other major media outlets.

For too long there has been a horrible myth circulating about the controversial test known as the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC).

Most of the major news outlets are reporting that the opt-out movement is being led by upper middle class white soccer moms who don’t want to see their kids fail. That is a huge lie!

I am an African American parent who lives in an underprivileged urban school district who refuses to subject his child to a test that is nothing more than an unproven postulation.

The fact that I’m black and that I live in Paterson is no indication that I’m unaware of the issues involving education today. I’m well aware that the NJDOE has been illegally underfunding school districts in an effort to push charter schools.

While I’m not totally against charters, I am against them having first dibs on the top performing students then taking and keeping any funding that goes with that child, even if they are sent back to a public school.

Now, back to the issue of the PARCC. To me, this test proves absolutely nothing, yet the NJBOE, who’s president lacks a background in education,  is set to make the PARCC a graduation requirement.

I am against using our children as test modules. I am against the idea of corporations making millions of dollars off of our children. I am against using and unproven test to determine the effectiveness of a school or a teacher.

Again, I’m not a white middle class soccer mom but I know my stuff when it comes to this issue. In fact, many parents in urban communities are well aware of the issues. We are all fighting back against this atrocious testing mechanism that will only cause tens of thousands of NJ’s high school seniors not to graduate.

I urge all parents to refuse the PARCC and demand better for our children.

Corey L. Teague
Activist, former Paterson school board member.

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