Educating our children is the center of a renewed debate about statewide standards, and now the State Board of Education is taking action.
CSCOPE, is a voluntary, standardized curriculum system used by most Texas schools, but some parents say it instills anti-American and socialist values in our children. So now the SBOE, including local member Marty Rowley, is taking a closer look at the system.
CSCOPE was first implemented in 2006, and aligns K-through-12 curricula to meet state standards, including proper preparation for TAKS testing. Currently, about seventy percent of Texas schools use the system, but after some parents began questioning the content, the SBOE formed a seven-member committee to analyze CSCOPE's efficacy.
Local board member and committee member Marty Rowley says its purpose is to provide objective information to parents and educators.
"Our desire is to do a qualitative review of those lessons," Rowley says, "and then make the results of that review public so that school boards, parents, and concerned citizens can look at the results of our review and make a determination as to whether CSCOPE is an appropriate vehicle to use in schools."
CSCOPE has been in the public eye recently as critics say the social studies content encourages anti-American, anti-Christian, and anti-capitalist perspectives.
The review committee will not take a side in the debate, but will make its review process and conclusions public so informed decisions can be made on a local level, as Rowley explains, "It will be an open, public, transparent review of CSCOPE - or at least the social studies lessons of CSCOPE - by those who are most interested in making sure that it's a quality product."
The committee last met on Friday, and its next meeting is scheduled for May 16th.
If you'd like to learn more about CSCOPE and what critics are saying about it, you'll find that in the links attached to this story.