Oregon Public Broadcasting, the Oregon branch of NPR, has a daily morning call-ing show called Think Out Loud. I listen to it occasionally, when I'm driving to another school for my literacy coaching work. The format of the show is for the moderator to interview two or three "experts" about an issue, and then the experts field call-in questions from the audience.
I found out this morning that OPB wants me to be an "expert" on their show next Tuesday, May 31!
They are running a program about Oregon's statewide writing assessment for students in grades 4-11. One of the experts will be the Oregon Department of Education's testing guru, and ODE gave them my name as a knowledgeable classroom teacher and state test rater. So...I've put in to use my last 4 hours of personal leave Tuesday morning to pay for my sub, and I'll head to Portland to the OPB studio for the morning.
Statewide testing is an issue right now because some of Oregon's legislators are asking ODE to do away with the state writing test, as a way to save money in tight times. The test costs $3 million, a sizable sum to be sure, but I believe it would be incredibly shortsighted to eliminate this valuable and authentic assessment of student writing.
I'll take an OCHS junior with me, a bright and articulate girl, to be the third "expert" on the panel for the show. I'll post a link to the show when OPB puts it on their website. Or if you want to listen in on Tuesday morning, you can go here for live audio streaming. The program begins just after 9:00 A.M., Oregon time.
Wish me luck!