Did the Prince William County Schools throw out the rulebook, relevant provisions of the Virginia Administrative Code, and county policy in approving “Math Investigations” as the primary curriculum in the county’s fifth grade classrooms? According to a recent post on the PWC Education Reform Blog, it sure looks that way. We now have spent millions of dollars on a curriculum that doesn’t meet the Virginia Standards of Learning, and cannot legally be used in the county schools. How wonderful.
Ok - so what’s it all mean to PWC students? That’s an interesting question, but PWC does have a regulation on that issue as well. It’s regulation 653, SOP 6-15 which states “If a school identifies a textbook not on either the Prince William County or the Virginia approved list, the text can only be purchased as a supplemental text and cannot be adopted as a basic textbook.” That means, per my interpretation, were PWC to actually follow it’s own policies and procedures, Investigations cannot be used in Grade 5 as a primary text.
The [purchase orders] to purchase Investigations will be going out in a few short weeks. School officials disregarded state procedures in selecting Investigations and the only way the school board will be enticed to act is if they get enough public pressure to do so and a handful of parents speaking at one school board meeting isn’t sufficient. If you’re concerned you need to speak out in public at a school board meeting if possible. Email is easy to ignore but send one to your board member and the Chairman if you prefer.
Why in the heck are we so determined to spend all this extra money on an experimental program that we’re willing to break policy and law in order to do so? A skeptic among us might wonder whether in this whole process someone isn’t getting personally enriched as a result.
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