COMMON CORE STANDARDS DAILY UPDATE // JANUARY 27, 2016

News You Can Use:

After Common Core, States Set Rigorous Standards
Education Next
Since implementing Common Core State Standards and high quality assessments, states have delivered on their commitments to tighten proficiency standards (or cut scores), an Education Next study finds. “Overall, 36 states have strengthened their standards since 2013, while just 5 have loosened them, and 7 have left their standards essentially unchanged,” the report notes. “In short, the Common Core consortium has achieved one of its key policy objectives: the raising of state proficiency standards.” Among the states that earned the lowest grades were Oklahoma, which voted in 2014 to replace the Common Core, and Texas and Virginia, which never adopted the standards. Mike Petrilli, president of the Fordham Institute, wrote last year that while the impact of rigorous standards and high-quality assessments has been “sobering” parents should “resist the siren song of those who want to use this moment of truth to attack the Common Core or associated tests.”

New Analysis of Math, Reading Scores ‘Very Disconcerting’
USA Today
An analysis by the Center for American Progress released Tuesday shows “startlingly few” students in metropolitan areas are able to read and do math at college- and career-ready proficiency levels. In Atlanta, for example, the study finds only 60 Hispanic fourth-grade students and 40 Hispanic eighth-grade students would score proficient or above in reading. “This is not a misprint,” the authors warn. “We’ve seen these numbers thrown around a lot and well-analyzed, but we hadn’t seen them put in this context.” The findings reaffirm the need for rigorous, consistent academic expectations for all students – noting that states and districts that have done so with fidelity, like those in Massachusetts and Florida, have made strong, consistent gains. Last year former New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson wrote, the Common Core “raises expectations for all children, including those who are struggling. By raising the bar for our students, we are ensuring that every child has the opportunities he or she deserves.”


Correcting the Record:

Trump Slams America’s Schools and Vows to Kill Common Core
Business Insider
In a video uploaded to Facebook, Donald Trump claims, “Common Core is a total disaster. We can’t let it continue.” Invoking concerns of federal overreach, Trump adds, “Education has to be at a local level. We can’t have the bureaucrats in Washington telling you how to manage your child’s education… We’re going to end Common Core. We’re going to have education an absolute top priority.” Trump mischaracterizes the Common Core as a federal initiative and ignores the fact that the standards are working. Here is where he gets it wrong: http://forstudentsuccess.org/donald-trump-calls-the-common-core-a-disaster/


On Our Reading List:

Should More Kids Skip College for Workforce Training?
PBS NewsHour
More than a million students will graduate high school this year and most will continue on to college, but nearly 40 percent of those who go to four-year colleges and about 70 percent of students at community colleges willa never earn a degree. “Many arrive at college unprepared, fall behind and drop out,” explains host John Tulenko. Vocational programs offer many students an alternative path. “It’s very important that the pathways are chosen by the kids themselves. We want to provide options, and let the young people make decisions,” says Mike Petrilli, president of the Fordham Institute.

Mystery Dark Money Group Attacks John Kasich in New Hampshire
Huffington Post
The American Future Fund, an Iowa-based nonprofit group, will run an ad campaign against Ohio Governor John Kasich ahead of this week’s Republican debate and into the New Hampshire primary. The ad buy, which totals $15,000 in Iowa and nearly $550,000 in New Hampshire, criticizes Kasich as a “supporter of Common Core.” The ads are targeted to voters aged 25 to 54, the article reports. Gov. Kasich has not shied away from his support of Common Core State Standards, arguing the standards were independently adopted by states.