Action Steps for Canceling MCAS
Checklist for Getting a #CancelMCAS Resolution Passed
Here are some suggested steps for winning a School Committee resolution vote to cancel the MCAS this year. Locals should feel free to modify the action in ways that work best for them. First, go to data on School Committee votes to determine whether yours has taken any action on the resolution. If not, take the steps below.
Win local association support. Affirm member support through your Executive Board or other means and identify a local leader or member as the spokesperson on this issue.
If possible, identify a supportive parent who can co-present the resolution. Reach out to Lisa Guisbond, executive director of Citizens for Public Schools, to find out if she knows any testing reform activists in your community. If not, try to identify a parent through local members or a school PTO/PTA organization.
Work with a supportive School Committee member to get on the agenda. This member should be asked to make a motion on behalf of the resolution and ask that you and the parent (if there is one) be invited to make a presentation about it at the next School Committee meeting. If you haven’t been able to do this step, find out if you can still make your request during a public comment period of the next School Committee meeting.
Ask for a vote of support. The “ask” of School Committee members is that they vote to affirm the MASC resolution and send a message about that support to the state representative(s) and senator(s) who represent the district, as well as to Governor Charlie Baker and Education Commissioner Jeffrey Riley.
Send your own letter of support. The local association and parent group should also send a message to the above-named state officials, expressing their support for canceling MCAS this year.
Alert local media. Contact your local media outlets before the School Committee meeting and encourage them to cover the issue. If that doesn’t happen, send them a press release or letter to the editor after the fact explaining why this action was taken.
Alert the MTA. Let your MTA field rep/organizer know when the vote takes place, whether it was unanimous, and whether a message was sent to elected officials and what, if anything, the response was. Also, send an email to that effect to Lisa Guisbond so she can update the tracker.