by Gretchen Logue of Missouri Education Watchdog.
CSCOPE is a customizable, online curriculum management system aligned with the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS). CSCOPE’s high quality curriculum, assessment and instructional components assist schools in meeting the high standard of rigor and relevance required in the TEKS and STAAR assessments.
CSCOPE has come under intense scrutiny from Texas legislators, parents and educators because of the cost, the curriculum, the necessity for online infrastructure in the schools, the fact CSCOPE is copyrighted and the taxpayers do not have the right to access the curriculum taught to their children. The school districts/teachers do not have the right to teach other curricula other than what is mandated in CSCOPE.
Donna Garner attended a Texas Senate Education Committee hearing on CSCOPE and the following is her transcript of the meeting. Many of the same issues raised by the legislators seem to be many of the same issues in CCSS: the huge cost (not voted on by taxpayers) to local districts, private corporations holding copyrights to curriculum paid for by tax dollars, the need for online infrastructure in the schools, curriculum inaccessible to the taxpayers and the inability for teachers/school districts to change the curriculum/standards/assessments.
As you read Garner’s transcript, do you believe this is a glimpse of the future to come with CCSS mandates? Is there really any substantial difference between the two programs?
Senator Patrick said that the public had brought most of the CSCOPE problems to their attention over the last six to eight months and that he was upset over the lack of transparency and the secrecy demonstrated by TESCCC/CSCOPE. He said this is the reason we need transparency, open meetings, and posted meetings — so that a governmental body cannot violate every entity of being a public entity. “How many more mistakes are there? … What is behind the curtain? … You are in 875 school districts … This is a very serious matter.”