This past weekend saw a number of Opinion/Editorial pages and columnists weigh in on the
Common Core State Standards. Here are some of the best with links and excerpts:
Editorial: Support for Common Core broad, deserved
Spokesman-Review (Spokane, WA)
May 4, 2013
"Common Core isn't a curriculum; it provides higher standards for curricula. In most states, math instruction would be moved up a year, meaning, for example, fifth-graders would be learning what a sixth-grader was once taught. Reading instruction would also become more rigorous.
"The Obama administration supports Common Core, which is a deal-breaker for some people. But this isn't like health care reform, where participation is mandated. Current and former Republican governors, such as Mitch Daniels, Jeb Bush and Bobby Jindal, support Common Core."
Common Core standards will prepare kids for success: As I See It
Op-Ed By Joan Benso and David Patti, The Patriot-News (PA)
May 5, 2013
"The consensus among the governors - Republicans and Democrats, conservatives and liberals - was that our students could do better, but we had to set higher expectations to get better academic results. "So with the input of educators, parents and experts in English and math, along with governors and other state-level leaders, the Common Core State Standards were developed for English and math. Eventually, 46 states voluntarily adopted these standards, including Pennsylvania in 2010.
"Lately, there's been a lot of negative chatter about the Common Core, much of it based on ill-informed speculation that it is a federal government plot to "take over" our local schools, dictate classroom curriculum or compile databases on our kids for some sinister, unstated purpose. In reality, the Common Core is a state-led initiative that involves no new student data collection and in no way usurps Pennsylvania's long history of local control."
Nancy Kaffer: Common Core standards are commonsense
Detroit Free Press
May 5, 2013
"The upshot of all of this is that a high school diploma means something different in Maryland or Massachusetts than it does in Mississippi or South Dakota, which puts American students at a disadvantage when competing for everything from jobs to slots at a university. It also makes it incredibly difficult to gauge whether the states' educational systems are competitive globally - but all signs indicate that we're being outperformed, internationally.
"The Common Core Standards Initiative was an effort to change that. Developed at the state level by the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers, funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, the core standards are an effort to create clear, rational expectations for student performance. There's a bit of a shift in assessment priorities - the core standards speak to a common criticism of American curricula, that too much material is covered in too little depth.
"So far, so good, right? The common core is an attempt to create rigorous, consistent standards for an American education. How could anyone have a problem with that?"
Achieve has developed materials to help states, districts, and others understand the organization and content of the standards and the content and evidence base used to support the standards. Visit http://www.achieve.org/achieving-common-core.
If you find a news clip supportive of the Common Core, please send it to Chad Colby at firstname.lastname@example.org.