Monday, February 13, 2012

White House Petition - President's Council on the Whole Child

A message to Wisconsin colleagues from Allison Kaplan, Faculty Associate at UW-Madison SLIS:

Dear Colleagues,

In view of Governor Walker's educational reform bill that requires reading testing in kindergarten, I am forwarding a message from Education Advocates that requests signing a petition to President Obama that reads (in part):

The true measure of student success is more than just a test score and such success requires support well beyond effective instruction. The demands of the 21st century require a new approach to education to fully prepare our nation’s youth for college, career, and citizenship. A whole child approach to education enhances learning by addressing each student’s social, emotional, physical, and academic needs through the shared contributions of schools, families, communities, and policymakers.

25,000 signatures are needed for the petition to go to the President's office. You do not need to be a teacher to sign the petition, only a concerned citizen. The message is below, thank you in advance to taking the time to read the petition and to help stop this testing madness. Allison

More Testing & More Sanctions Are Not the Answer

We need your help. Congress is on the verge of making the same mistakes they made with NCLB: a narrow focus on reading and math at the expense of other subjects, relying on standardized state test scores as the measure of a student's abilities, and paying lip service to the importance of classroom teachers while providing them little support.

What we need—and what Washington needs to grasp—is a new vision for education that meets the comprehensive needs of students. In other words, a whole child education.

You already know the success that can be achieved when each child is healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged. Unfortunately, after more than a decade of NCLB, the politicians still don't get it. More testing, more sanctions, and more blame are simply not the answers.

We need to tell the Beltway crowd about what's working in schools and how they can best help you. Add your name to the petition asking the White House to create a President's Council on the Whole Child.

It's a small step, but it's a start. A President's Council will give our leaders the advice they need from actual practitioners about what matters most. Imagine, politicians relying on the input of experts! Without your support, things won't change. 

Every voice, like every child, counts so please forward this message to your friends and colleagues.

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