Thursday, December 08, 2005

Castillo Surprise Friday

Susan Castillo is giving a speech at the City Club tomorrow. She's going to call for the elimination of CIM and CAM.

I heard it from Steve Carter, education reporter from the Oregonian, who got an advance copy of her speech.

She apparently won't get too specific (and of course it isn't exactly the proper forum to do that) but she will say that it is "time to turn the page on CIM and CAM," that "people don't understand it," and that "we should replace them with different assessments." (This is my memory of what Steve read from her speech, so they are not direct quotes.)

To say the least, I am surprised. I've spent the better part of the last four years trying to get rid of CIM and CAM and replace Oregon's flawed assessment system with a less expensive, less time consuming system that gives us more useful and more reliable data. Castillo opposed my efforts at every turn.

In my campaign for Superintendent (which she won handily) I made an issue out of CIM/CAM and she defended it. All the education establishment groups lined up behind her.

Now, a full three years after the campaign, and after two legislative sessions where my repeal bills were killed by the Democrats, and almost 15 years since the School Reform Act was shoved through by Vera Katz, she has apparently come around.

Well, all I can say is I look forward to working with her to make it happen.

I hope someone at the city club or in mainstream media have the sense to ask whether anybody going to be held accountable for the hundreds of millions of dollars that was wasted over the last 15 years implementing this failed system.


Paul Farago said...

Accountability ... perhaps Carter citing you in today's article is all you'll get ... until the Castillo re-election debacle. Even so, at least the Oreg-onion didn't seek out some obscure parent or unknown school board official for the anti-Orthodoxy comment. Abnormal of them.

The Educrats want their hands on the CIM/CAM dollars - likely for PERS or other out-of-the-classroom binging. There will be no post-mortem, no-one will lose their job over CIM/CAM. There will be lots of new hiring and spending.

Try to complain and they'll protest: "We've been over and over that many times. There's nothing new here. Let's just move on and do the people's business - what they elected us to do."

Contratulations, Rob, and keep it up. You deserve a ton of credit.

The Manly Ferry said...

Congrats, Mr. Kremer. I'm doing my bit to spread the word.

Victoria Taft said...

Okay...what's the real angle here, Rob? Why Castillo's about-face? The arguments against CIM CAM are still as powerful as ever. Did the teacher's union get through to her on the issue? Is there some quid pro quo out there of which we're unaware?

Rob Kremer said...

It is really hard to say why she made this pivot. I wouldn't automatically assume some hidden motive, or some behind the scenes pressure she's succombing to. I remain mystified.

My question is what took so long. Why do we have to let big programs fail year after year and then only end them ten years after it's obvious they've failed?

Better late than never I suppose.

Anonymous said...

Let's all not forget for 1 minute that "Steve on a cell phone from Tualatin" (Steve Schopp), has been exposing the crimes of CIM-CAM for many many years.

Hats of & Congrats to both Rob & Steve!

Tony said...

She is likely doing it because it is a highly unpopular program and she is running for reelection.

This is the issue we R's would use to froth up the masses and throw her out as an obstacle to reform. She has removed that, making the argument harder to make.

Sure, we can still make it, but only to people with long attention spans (exactly 237 voters statewide). Education funding and performance is complex, and highly charged emotionally, so it is difficult to make inroads. CIM CAM was the poster child for the establishment's lack of flexibility on education, and she neutralized it.