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Parents Hold Rally To Protest New Common Core Testing

Two New Hartford parents organized a rally against the Common Core education testing and want to ensure their message is heard by the state. The rally Thursday night comes in response to State Education Commissioner John King calling off four scheduled town meetings where parents were planning to protest.
Two New Hartford parents organized a rally against the Common Core education testing and want to ensure their message is heard by the state. The rally Thursday night comes in response to State Education Commissioner John King calling off four scheduled town meetings where parents were planning to protest. The theme tonight was "No King, No Problem!"
Parents, teachers, community members and even students gathered Thursday evening to speak out against the new student testing system.
"There was like a lot of essays in it and then you had to read a lot of paragraphs and I was really stressed out so I came home crying to my mom," said 7th grader Mari Sosnowski.
Sosnowski is describing the English test she took last year under the Common Core. She was so overwhelmed, her parents decided to let her opt out of the math test and her classmates say they felt the same way.
"My brain just started to shut down because I couldn't handle that much testing in one day it was just way too much,” says 7th grader Gabby Desanctis.
Which is why Gabby and Mari came out to the Common Core rally Thursday night, to speak out against what they describe as an unfair system, and their parents and teachers are concerned.
"We see public education headed in a direction that we're not comfortable with, there's an excessive amount of focus on testing,” said Jamie McNair, co-organizer of the rally.
"What I’m seeing is stressed out kids, stressed out teachers, stressed out districts that are trying to keep up with it,” says parent and teacher Lorraine Eady.
"I support public education and our teachers but I’m not pleased with the lack of creativity in our classrooms, the 'one size fits all' curriculum and the large, large number of tests that kids are required to take today,” said Jessica McNair.
McNair and her husband organized Thursday night's rally. She says the goal is to educate parents and get them to speak up on behalf of their children.
But not everyone thinks common core is a bad thing.
"They are a step in the direction we have to go to ensure that our students are prepared for the 21st century,” says retired teacher David Parzych.
In a statement released Thursday from New York State Education Commissioner John King he says:
"There is still a lot of work to do. But last year New York’s Common Core assessments gave us a new baseline to work from. Our students deserve a world-class education that prepares them for life after high school. The common core will help our students get there."

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