BESE sets special meeting for Tuesday

The state’s top school board has scheduled a special meeting for Tuesday at 11:30 a.m. to discuss its next steps in the battle over Common Core.

The gathering may include a closed-door session to respond to Gov. Bobby Jindal’s executive order aimed at killing the tests set to go with the new academic standards in reading, writing and math.

The governor said last week that he wants previously planned exams replaced by new ones by the state Department of Education seeking requests for proposals.

However, the state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education has endorsed Common Core in 2010 and earlier this year.

Chas Roemer, president of the board, and state Superintendent of Education John White contend that the governor cannot unilaterally order Louisiana out of the tests, which are being developed by a consortium called the Partnership for the Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers.

Roemer and White back Common Core.

Jindal opposes the changes.

The gathering is sure to spark controversy.

Common Core opponents, who are siding with the governor, want the state to immediately start the process of finding new exams for students in grades 3-8 for the 2014-15 school year.

Common Core backers disagree, and they say educators should pursue legal or other steps needed to maintain exam plans that have been in the works for four years.

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