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Letter: Petition To Protect Your Child’s Privacy

I know we are all busy, but I am asking you to read the following email and help our students in NY State.

By now I am certain you have all heard of Common Core. Though the intent may have been good, the resulting standards and implementation have been a complete debacle.

At no time were early education or developmental specialists consulted in designing the standards. Special needs children have been completely forgotten. The result is a set of expectations for our youngest students which are not only developmentally inappropriate, but completely at odds with what we know of cognitive development. Ironically, Jason Zimba, the mathematics standards writer for Common Core, reports that these standards were designed to prepare students for a two year college, and that graduating seniors would be unprepared for a freshman calculus course. How can we consider these standards to be superior if our graduating students will be even less prepared for STEM fields than they are now?

Dr. Sandra Stotsky and Professor James Milgram, the only two educational experts on the validation committee, refused to sign off on the standards, reporting that they would leave our students unprepared for a four year college and make advancement in the STEM fields virtually impossible.

Finally, the data collection associated with the standards is a blatant violation of privacy. Over 400 data points are being collected and stored in a national data base. Along with academic history and test scores, more sensitive information is being collected, such as behavioral or disciplinary actions at school, medical or psychological diagnoses, and family marital status, to name a few, with personally identifiable information linked to it! This information may be shared with third party vendors at the discretion of the district and state, under the guise of development of educational materials.

FERPA and HIPAA laws were modified to prevent parents from blocking such data collection. Although I am vehemently opposed to my daughter’s personal and private information being collected and shared, I have no rights to prevent this.

I have attempted to be brief in my many, many objections to Common Core. I am therefore urging you to read this petition and sign to put a halt to common core and get our educational system back on track. We are making headway, but we still need more voices.  Please step up for our children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, friends, and put an end to this. The link for the petition is www.fixnyschools.com.

Sam B. Myers

 

News

On Saturday, July 5, Building J on the Western Waterfront was opened to the public for a free concert of classical music played by talented youth in the Oyster Bay Music Festival. The acoustics in the large metal shed were lively as the backdrop of the Ida May, a wooden oyster dredge under construction, lent artisanal flavor to the rich stew of mostly sea-related musical selections. People sat on stacks and benches of freshly milled wood or stood in the cavernous space. They soaked in beautiful solos, duets and trios that combined voice, piano, flute, cello and violin. Frank M Flower & Sons provided fresh oysters that engaged the palate, and representatives from Steinway & Sons gave a quick overview of how their pianos are made, relating several aspects of their meticulous process to the construction of the Ida May.

Last week was one of Oyster Bay’s biggest, most anticipated summer events, the Italian American Society’s St. Rocco’s Festival. Returning to its usually spot in Fireman’s Field on Shore Avenue, the festival was filled with amusement rides, live music, and great food and company.

“We come every year to St. Rocco’s with friends,” said Laura Regan of East Norwich. “The rides and awesome food make it a lot of fun.”


Sports

Oakcliff’s intensive training program provided a high level of competition last weekend at the U.S. Women’s Match Racing Championship in Oyster Bay.

This year, the teams selected for the event were highly ranked through the United States, and several of the competitors are past and current Oakcliff trainees, including Elizabeth Shaw, Kathryn Shiber, Madeline Gill, and Danielle Gallo.

A total of 11 members of St. Dominic Track Team (grades 1-8) recently medaled at the Nassau-Suffolk CYO Championship Finals at Mitchel Field. In the finals, the athletes competed against the finalists from all three regions, representing more than 2,500 athletes from 23 other parishes.

In addition to the student athletes’ success, the track coaches were honored as well. St. Dominic CYO Track coaches Phil Schade (grades 1-3), Julie and Mike Keffer (grades 4-6) and Rich Cameron (grades 7-8) were selected by peer coaches in their region for the NSCYO Team Sportsmanship Award. The Saint Dominic CYO track program, in its second year, has already proven to be a force to be reckoned with and the young runners are among the best on Long Island.


Calendar

OB Band Concerts

Wednesday, July 23

Music Under The Stars

Friday, July 25

Annual Chicken BBQ

Saturday, July 26



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com