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Pleasantville Schools Withdraw From 'Race To The Top'

Photo Credit: Contributed
Photo Credit: Contributed

PLEASANTVILLE, N.Y. -- Pleasantville Schools are opting out of "Race to the Top" and are instead asking the state to reflect on concerns the program raises about student privacy.

"The potential for data mining is staggering," Superintendent Mary Fox-Alter said in a statement. "It is frightening that corporations such as Pearson and EScholar are involved in this data cloud and are forecasting great profit in the K-12 public education market.”

The Race to the Top program allows every district to apply for funding funding that they receive by implementing new regulations, which include posting student state test scores and teacher evaluations online.

Pleasantville had been awarded $6,000 over four years to participate. In return, the district would have had to participate in an electronic data portal, which Pleasantville officials said has the potential to collect more than 400 data elements that have been identified in the State Education Department’s data template dictionary.

Pleasantville joins other districts, including Hastings, Hyde Park, Mount Pleasant, Pelham, Pocantico, and Rye Neck, in asking the New York State Education Department to stop and reflect on the specific concerns raised about student privacy and the potential use of student information as profit centers by corporate America.

The Pleasantville Board of Education is also asking residents to attend a public forum on the Common Core being held on Monday from 4-7 p.m. at Port Chester Middle School, 113 Bowman Ave. State Education Commissioner John King and other state officials will listen to concerns on the new learning standards and related issues.

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