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Michael Hynes: Time to Slay the College Board Dragon

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Michael Hynes is Superintendent of the Patchogue-Medford School District on Long Island in New York State.

He writes about his contempt for the College Board.

He writes:

“Reader beware. Before you read my thoughts about the educational sacred cow and standardized testing machine known as the College Board, you should know up front that I am no fan of the College Board CEO/President David Coleman who years ago was the architect of Common Core.

“Most of us in the educational world know of the Common Core State Standards and the “test focused education reform movement” that accompanied it was a fiasco that still plagues American schools today.

“Mr. Coleman was on the English Language Arts writing team and his good friend and eventual partner at Student Achievement Partners (SAP) Jason Zimba was a leader on the Common Core Mathematics team. Student Achievement Partners is a non-profit organization that researches and develops achievement based assessment standards.

“Interesting enough, it was funded in part by Bill Gates. The final nail in the coffin for me was when I realized Mr. Coleman, his former assistant and Mr. Zimba were founding board members for Michelle Rhee’s StudentsFirst, an organization that lobbies for standards driven educational reform.

“Do you see a pattern?

“Now Mr. Coleman leads the College Board money-making machine and this educational monolith is the church that most public schools worship several times a year.

“For the reader who doesn’t know what The College Board is: it is the ultimate gatekeeper and judge-jury-executioner for millions of students each year who dream to enter college and it literally is a hardship for many families due to the test taking expense.

“Schools and families have no other choice because there is no other game in town, aside from a student taking the ACT exam.

“The College Board claims to be a non-profit organization, but it’s hard to take that claim seriously when its exam fees for the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT), Advanced Placement test (AP), services for late registration, score verification services and a multitude of other related fees are costing families and schools millions of dollars each year.

“Eleven years ago this “non-profit” made a profit of $55 million and paid nineteen College Board Executives’ salaries that ranged from three hundred thousand dollars to over one million dollars a year.

“That trend continues today.

“Cost aside, it is hard to fathom and understand how the College Board has claimed a monopoly-like status over our public school system.

“Over the years it has literally convinced school administrators, school board trustees, teachers, parents and students they can’t live without what they sell. They sell classes and tests to schools like Big Pharma sells pills to consumers.”

Read on.

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