We submitted a Freedom of Information Act request to obtain “all curricular materials, sources, articles, books, videos, presentations and course guides” for all Social Emotional Learning programs in use in Greenwich Schools for grades K-12 last October.
The results came back yesterday.
According to Dr. Stacey Heiligenthaler, “GPS uses Second Step, but the curriculum and materials are copyrighted and cannot be shared per FOI.”
It’s hard to believe that it took 10 months to say, “we won’t show you” the materials, right?
Just so you know, we subsequently made a request to Greenwich Superintendent Dr. Jones to be able inspect these materials in person. We will keep you posted on the response, and what we learn.
Curriculum transparency is obviously a hot button issue and when schools prevent parents from seeing what's going on in the classroom, it creates serious issues of mistrust, apprehension and frustration. Especially when it feels like curriculum is being hidden under the guise of “copyright protection."
Why aren’t teachers required to post the course syllabus, curriculum guide and the list of Board-approved curricular materials for each class? Wouldn’t that solve this serious transparency issue for parents?
How hard would that be anyway, considering that the Board of Education is required by Connecticut education law to approve all curricular materials used in the classroom? Shouldn’t the BOE already have a list of everything they have approved? Isn’t that the proper way to ensure the inappropriate, unapproved materials do not make it into the classroom?