California Educator

October 2013

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Profile California is committed to implementing CCSS and the required assessments correctly, even if it means upsetting U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan. Based on evidence and research, the new state standards are aligned with college and work expectations, and are more rigorous. They require critical thinking skills and are internationally benchmarked for comparison with other countries. The Common Core State Standards completely change how teachers teach and what students will be expected to learn, and therefore require training, professional development, textbooks and instructional materials, along with time to get used to the new computer-based assessments in order for students to succeed under the new modernized standards. Advocacy Meet Linda Valdes INTERVIEWED BY LEN FELDMAN What are others saying about AB 484? "Faced with the choice of preparing California's children for the future or continuing to cling to outdated policies of the past, our state's leaders worked together and made the right choice for our students. These new assessments represent a challenge for our education system — but a lifetime of opportunity for students. As a teacher, I'm thrilled to see our state and our schools once again leading the way." TOM TORLAKSON, Superintendent of Public Instruction "Supporting a transition plan for the new state assessment system is just common sense. Our current testing system is limited, measuring only rote memorization of facts, but the new assessments will actually measure how students apply knowledge and solve complex problems. As co-sponsors of this bill, we know that this is what the business community needs in order to have a trained and skilled workforce that will allow us to compete in a global market." DAVID RATTRAY, Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce Go Online Linda Valdes is a "blue card" member of the state Republican Party. That means at the state party's conventions, she has the right to cast a vote. Not all delegates have that authority. A sixth-grade teacher at Rio Vista Elementary in the Santa Clarita Valley, she is a member of the Saugus Teachers Association. Why did you get involved in politics? I am the daughter of immigrants who became small business owners. I am involved in politics and the Republican Party so that I can educate party members and elected officials about the significant issues impacting our students daily. How did you become more involved in the party? I was appointed as a state delegate by former Assembly Member Cameron Smyth. What positions have you held in the Republican Party? I have served on the executive board of the Republican National Hispanic Assembly, and I am a member of the local Republican Congress and Assembly. Are you also active in your local union? I have served on the Saugus Teachers Association's executive board and as the chapter's representative to the Bay Valley Service Center Council in previous years. Advice? It is important for CTA members of both major political parties to be involved in ensuring that policymakers recognize every child has a right to a free and appropriate education. CTA provides support, training and resources on all issues surrounding new standards and testing. OCTOBER 201 3 Educator 10 Oct 2013 v2.1 int.indd 39 39 10/7/13 9:39 PM

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