Revisiting CIM/CAM

 As we move closer to ridding our schools of our failed School Reform called CIM/CAM it is important to recognize and acknowledge why it failed.

 First and foremost is in CIM’s 14 year life, it has never moved beyond the promise and decree mode and demonstrated (through any independent impartial means) that it has helped any segment of the student population, Let alone the broad spectrum of students being subjected to the distractions it has imposed.Â


 Every year more graduates leave our high schools, some with CIM in hand, only to discover (along with their parents) that all that process meant absolutely nothing. Not just nothing, but a severe loss.

 Administrators, teachers and councilors spend significant hours every week attempting to push more students through this process. Unfortunately, these hours must be diverted from other efforts. Vulnerable and low-achieving students who need extra help are shortchanged because CIM burden devours the time and resources traditionally used to help these students.  The high-achieving students also are shortchanged, with disappearing time which could have been used to help nurture their ambition and talents.

The bottom line is, that the effort, time, and money CIM/CAM requires is not delivering a reliable and validated benefit worth continuing.

 Of course, the chorus claiming CIM benefits continues to sing. Yet, with no mechanisms ever in place to verify any of the claims or an actual net gain, we end up perpetuating a myth built on an incomplete system. The reckless use of flawed assessments testing goes unchecked.  Thousands of test results have been thrown out. Â

 Because these tests ended up in the garbage, all of the time creating, preparing, administrating and scoring those tests was wasted by all those involved, which includes the State and 198 school districts. That’s a tremendous failure. Â

 This is the reality of our education system known as CIM.  That’s why it must go and be replaced with a solid proven system. We need a system that is readily available, requires less time, and fewer education dollars. Along with those obvious benefits there will also be a return to an assessment system with a correlation to a national norm instead of the one we have now which spawns endless speculation and debate as to what it actually measures.  No longer should we rely on our trial-and-error testing system which is slicing away, forever, part of our student’s education.

 Ongoing efforts to bride or threaten students into earning the CIM (which has no worth) are producing exactly what should be expected form a system so lacking in merit.

 Original well intended motives have all but dried up as all that remains are empty promises, coercion and denial. Continuing the Oregon School Reform Act for the 21st Century will serve only to lock Oregon public schools in the political gutter it now resides.

 Further eroding credibility and support while damning more students to a process deserving neither.

Republished with permission of author.

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