Common standards, many opinions

Comments are pouring in on common core standards, reports Ed Week’s Catherine Gewertz.

Chris Minnich, who’s leading the common-standards work for the Council of Chief State School Officers, told me that the comments are currently trending about 75 percent positive and 25 percent negative. Not that we can know that independently; the current plan is not to post any of the actual comments, so we can see for ourselves, but to summarize them at the end.

Gewertz suggests editing out the profanity and posting the rest.

Standards will raise expectations in math and English classrooms, conclude Fordham’s experts.

On the math side, while some tweaks are needed, particularly to the organization of the high school expectations, our reviewers found rigorous, internationally-competitive standards that earn an impressive A-.

On the ELA side, the draft standards earn a solid B. And with some clarification of vague standards and the addition of more references to specific content that students must know in order to demonstrate mastery of the essential college-readiness skills outlined by the draft, these standards have the potential to be top notch.

Fordham warns:

On the implementation side, if these standards are going to realize their promise and truly drive student achievement, states will need to ensure that these standards are linked to rigorous, content-rich curricula and outstanding instruction. Even rigorous standards, after all, only describe the destination.

The wheels are coming off the national standards train, counters Jay Greene.

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