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Shen not scheduled for Common Core forum

The state Education Department is doing Common Core town hall meetings again, but the Shenendehowa School District doesn't have one currently.

The district was originally scheduled to have a meeting in Shenendehowa on Wednesday, but it was one of four meetings cancelled after state Education Department Commissioner John King Jr. got grilled in the first meeting. There was a lot of criticism aimed at the department for cancelling the forums and they announced on Friday that 12 new forums with a new format would be held.

Of the announced locations for a forum, the closest to Shenendehowa is in Albany.

When asked why Shenendehowa wasn't scheduled to get a forum, despite initially being scheduled for one, an SED spokesman said, "It's not a matter of them not getting one."

He added that the schedule for the forums is not complete.

Shenendehowa Teachers Association President Megan DeLaRosa said Wednesday there should still be a discussion on the Common Core at Shenendehowa. “Something definitely needs to be done so parents have their forum to ask their questions and share their concerns,” she said.

DeLaRosa said she was initially encouraged by plans to engage parents, who she said still have unresolved questions, such as how assessments will impact their children.

According to SED, the new style for the forums means they will will be moderated by local state legislators.

King said in a statement that he wants to have a dialogue with parents. "More and smaller discussions will make sure there's a real opportunity for parents to be heard," he said."This is just the first round; we'll continue to schedule forums for parents. We want these to be regular events. We want the conversation to rise above all the noise and make sure parents understand the Common Core, and, just as important, we want to understand parents' concerns."

Nearby Shenendehowa, in the Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake School District, a local movement organized a forum on the Common Core for Oct. 29.

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