Friday, April 11, 2008

Someone Had To Get A big Kickback On This One


This was in our latest memo:
The DOE NYC has invested millions of dollars in a company by the name of Acuity. The company has put together a predictor exam to be given in all ME22 classes. This exam will inform the teachers what specific areas students need help (his grammar, not mine). The teachers will be able to make up worksheets that stress the weaknesses of the students....This exam will contain problems that the company predicts will be on the Integrated Algebra Regents.

Wow, millions of dollars to do what we as teachers have been doing for a lot less than millions of dollars. Why would a mere classroom teacher be able to tell what their students need help in? Maybe the NYC DOE should spend a few more millions to supply us with these worksheets. Or. better yet, maybe the DOE should use these millions to provide smaller classes and curriculum suitable to the children taking the courses.

Millions of dollars? Just when I think I have seen it all, something else comes along.

I just googled Acuity. It is owned by...McGraw Hill. It has lots of "wonderful" ideas about teaching and testing. I cold describe the site, but a visit says it all.

11 comments:

sandi said...

CTB McGraw-Hill is the company that makes our TCAP test (That's the Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program. The state mandated tests that we are taking next week.)

When we were getting the new math books the McGraw Hill people made sure to mention that little fact, even though that's really not supposed to matter.

Ms. Tsouris said...

OK now let's think of what could have been done with the $80 million that went to this boondoggle....maybe an actual school or an annex to relieve overcrowding? New computers for classrooms and how about teachers' work spaces so maybe they could get into the Acuity website to look up a kid? The corruption of this administration is so obvious but the legislators appear to be willing to look the other way because it's Bloomberg........who exactly are they representing anyway?

Anonymous said...

This is nothing new. Elementary teachers were given the Princeton Review test for years. Acuity is just more work. Also,(I believe) teacher tenure is now connected to using Acuity in the classroom.

Schoolgal

17 (really 15) more years said...

OK wait- you mean all these years when I've been copying and pasting old Regents questions to make practice exams I was being "innovative"? Go figure- I could have been rich if I'd just thought of marketing that idea.....

NYC Educator said...

Thank goodness we're not tossing away valuable funds on reducing class sizes or constructing decent facilities.

sandi said...

We had to give the Princeton Review test three times this year. our state spent I think $8 million on a contract with Princeton Review. If our school used it, we didn't have to pay anything. We are using something else next year. Personally, I didn't like the Princeton Review. But we have to give some test to see how they are doing BEFORE we give the TCAP.

I could have told them the 2nd week of school how most of these kids will do on the TCAP.

Anonymous said...

It is amazing the money the DOE spends!
I am a mother of a 16 year old who goes to a private school. I wanted to BORROW the book ALGEBRA 2--published by Gleancoe and McGrawHill. I called the HS. in my neighbordhood and they told me that I could not borrow the book because it is property of the DOE. I stated that this ALGEBRA 2 book is not being used in the public schools and it must be stored somewhere in the building. (HS changed Algebra 2 books by Impact Math in the public schools) They said NO. Meanwhile they spent taxpayers money in this ACuity program. DO I HAVE ANY RIGHTS AS a taxpayer mother? Can I BORROW for 2 months a book that the children in the public schools are not using? Can a discarded Algebra 2 benefit another AMERICAN student whose parents pay taxes?
I need your help to understand this kind of politics.

Anonymous said...

I never had a problem lending text book materials out (as long as they were returned).

The problem with Princeton and/or Acuity is that sometimes we as teachers have not always caught up with the curriculum calendar, so concepts not taught by us come out as "not mastered". When I prepared students for the 5th grade Social Studies test (given in November), I often taught graphing before it was required since it ties in with Social Studies. Hence, I give up what's on the calendar. The State however doesn't take these things into account when they make up the teaching calendar. Idiots!!!!

Schoolgal

Pissed Off said...

I can't help with the politics because I don't understand them myself. If someone wants a book, I loan it to them, no questions asked.

If the DOE has this kind of money to give to McGraw Hill, then it can lend (or give) a book away.

Profesora de espaƱol said...

I think the fact that there are typos at the website says a lot about their company. Not exactly the kind of people I would want informing me about my students. What a joke.

Hall_Monitor said...

Everyone should check out http://detentionslip.org. It's a leading source for breaking crazy stories in public education.