State Education Commissioner Makes A Stop In Greece

Apr 8, 2014

Credit Charles Lane WSHU

State Education Commissioner John King visited  the Greece School District Tuesday.

King met with administrators, teachers and parents to see how the district's collaborative effort in implementing the Common Core Standards is working.

The district received more than $1 million state grant to help teachers support each other around the Common Core instruction and evaluation system.

King says teachers share best practices, review curriculum, monitor student progress and lead professional development.

"Where not just labor and management are collaborating but teachers are collaborating with each other. Teachers are looking to master teachers to help them improve. But teachers are also looking to their peers…that strong level of culture collaboration really comes across."

The district says the model has help teacher morale, increased attendance and reduced disciplinary referrals by more than 50 percent on the secondary level. This is the second time the Greece district has received the grant. 

Lisa Christoffel is a parent of two boys attending Greece schools. One is a  senior and the other is an 8th grader. She says she isn’t specifically worried about the  Common Core Standards but is concerned with how the new model was rolled out. She felt it was rushed.

"These standards are different and we needed time to get the curriculum developed and start holding everyone accountable from the students to the teachers and the schools with the ability to do that."

Christoffel says she's encouraged by the model that is being used  to help students make an easier transition.

The Common Core standards have been the subject of controversy in recent months, coming under fire by a number of parents and educators about how they were being implemented. A number of students around the state opted out of standardized tests last week.  King says the state is trying to make sure that students are ready for the challenges of the 21st century.