From: Robynn Stoddard
To: mwbates,
Subject: Ann Florence-Fired Teacher, Granite School District
Date: Thu Apr 10 16:20:55 MDT 2014
Body:
I am concerned with how teachers who have the courage to speak out against Common Core and SAGE are being treated. I am a parent who has opted my children out of the new SAGE testing because I do not believe it is in their best interest to take them.

I am writing to support Ann Florence a teacher that was recently fired for speaking out about these tests and then to her students about disciplinary action that was pending against her. I believe that she knew she would not be coming back after Spring Break and wanted her students to know why. She should never have been punished by her district for exercising her free speech rights. Nowhere in the constitution does it state that government employees' free speech rights are limited. I believe that this great teacher spoke out because she loves what she does and she cares about these kids. She wants them to get the best education she can give them and she felt she was being limited in negative ways. It is despicable to fire good teachers because they don't agree with the changes that have been made. It was also very cowardly for the Granite School District to let her go over the Spring Break when parents and students would not even know. If the school boards continue to treat good teachers who have concerns this way, I fear that people who are considering becoming teachers will change their minds and our pool of good teachers will diminish.

Please work to reinstate this wonderful teacher. It is a detriment to her current and future students to take her away.

For all of the noise that has made of late from the Governor and legislators about getting the Federal Government out of our business, I am shocked and dismayed that one of the most important things, the education and privacy of our children, was sold to the Federal Government and Bill Gates for the promise of MAYBE getting Race to the Top money (Which we never received.) I am shocked and dismayed that the legislature had no idea or say in this process. Get Common Core/Utah Core out of our state! Return control of our curriculum where it belongs!

I support Ann Florence and any other teachers that are brave enough to question these new, unproven, very questionable standards that they are being forced to teach!

Robynn