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Letter: Community urged to express thoughts on Common Core

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Dear editor,

Many meetings have been held around the state in order to get valuable feedback from parents and educators concerning Common Core and its impact on our school systems. I, like Governor Jindal, supported the idea of addressing the educational process that would insure our children’s success and competitiveness in the ever growing world market and work place.

We have a great school system in Bossier Parish, which has provided a wonderful education for our children. This has been made possible by engaging parents, educators and support personnel, while being led by well trained and experienced administrators and staff. The Bossier Parish School Board and its elected members have been a proactive and responsible body that listens and acts on our behalf.

For 15 years, I served on this board and developed a respect for so many dynamic professionals, which without question, take their jobs seriously. As a legislator, this past experience has been invaluable.

Now, let me share my observations from the many calls and visits that I have had with my constituents concerning Common Core. These are the citizens that I work for and represent. Many of their initial concerns I tried to accept as being apprehensive about something new.  I presumed the complaints would slow down as Common Core became more of a routine. The fact is the calls have become more numerous in number, with my family members expressing these same concerns.

Many of our constituents have felt that this hastily imposed system was now affecting the emotional moods of their children and has also removed the joy of learning. Many have hired tutors to assist their children, but what about those who cannot afford to hire a tutor or who have very little parental involvement? Is this not also taxing our parents who are already financially strapped?

Our beloved teachers are giving their best with this “hastily implemented curriculum” which has no basis for demonstrating progress or success (takes years to establish a basis for measuring learning). Principals are telling me that the measure of their success is unknown. Now, how is that for work place horror?

I humbly call on my friends to express their feeling on Common Core and the impact that it is having on their loved ones. Unlike in the past the disconnect is not abating. Can we find COMMON ground?

Those in our community, that have been our educational champions for years, please listen up. This is not an isolated incident of disconnect!

I have scheduled a Town Hall Meeting, which will be held on November 6th, from 6 to 8pm at Bossier Parish Community College, Theater, Building-C. I encourage those that are interested in education to please attend and share your concerns with me and my fellow panelist. As host, I request that all ideas be respectfully heard.

My hope is to establish the communities concerns, both positive and negative, so a real picture can be taken of Common Core with the questions and concerns expressed that night, being noted, reviewed and the findings reported and released to the public.

Our children, who are our most precious asset, must be provided with a solid educational foundation for the future.

God bless each and every one of you,

State Representative Henry Burns

District 9