COMMON CORE STANDARDS DAILY UPDATE // JUNE 7, 2016

News You Can Use:

Bailing on Common Core Tests Is Costing States Millions / Daily Caller
States that have attempted to “go it alone” on standardized testing, often to appease critics, have incurred sizeable costs to develop new exams that may be inferior to those they replaced. More than 20 states discontinued membership in the PARCC or Smarter Balanced consortia since 2012, but those decisions “may be a much bigger problem than most states expected. Getting new standardized tests doesn’t eliminate problems, it turns out, and in some cases it may just prolong them.” Last fall Mike Petrilli wrote that state leaders should “get under the hood” of their exams to determine if they are equally as challenging and accurate as PARCC and Smarter Balanced—which evidence shows do a good job of measuring college and career readiness.

How One Innovative School District Has Closed Gaps on Harder Common Core Tests / Hechinger Report
Wiseburn Unified School District in Los Angeles, where the student population is chiefly minority and low-income, has done a good job of preparing its students to compete with their more affluent peers across the state. Educators attribute the success largely to early implementation of instruction aligned to the Common Core, especially in math, and support for teachers. A “math check” by the Collaborative for Student Success explains changes to math instruction are intended to help all students develop a strong conceptual understanding of numbers and functions, while still ensuring they master the basics, like standard algorithms.


 

Correcting the Record:

The Internet of Things Has a Child Privacy Problem / Washington Post
Describing the increased collection of children’s personal data, the article suggests education technology companies are using the Common Core to quietly collect and sell student data. “This data is used for marketing purposes, to help target ad dollars toward the next generation of consumers.” The article cites a report by the National Center for Education Policy, which calls for greater insight into data collection and the requirements of parental consent. Contrary to the article’s claim, Common Core State Standards say nothing of states’ data collection policies. In fact, if a state were to repeal the Common Core tomorrow, it would experience no changes to its data collection processes. Here is where the article gets it wrong:

Correcting the Record: Common Core State Standards Do Not Subject Students to Mass Data Collection

A Washington Post article describing increased collection of children’s personal data suggests education technology companies are using the Common Core to collect and sell student data.

“This data is used for marketing purposes, to help target ad dollars toward the next generation of consumers,” the article claims. It cites a report by the National Center for Education Policy, which calls for greater insight into data collection protocols and the requirements of parental consent.

Contrary to opponents’ claim that the Common Core jeopardizes students’ personal information, the standards say nothing of states’ data collection policies. In fact, if a state were to repeal the Common Core tomorrow, it would experience no changes to its data collection processes.

Such allegations conflate the Common Core with student assessments. But Common Core State Standards are not a test. They are set of learning goals that outline what students should reasonably know and be able to do at each grade level. Every state has education standards they use to guide curricula and classroom instruction.

Testing policy, including what student data states collect and how they collect it, is determined by state and local officials—regardless of whether that state uses the Common Core or another set of academic expectations.

“I encourage parents to read [the Common Core State Standards]. They will find no mention of data-collection mandates,” Rob McKenna, former attorney general for Washington State, wrote last year. “That’s because, in reality, Common Core has no impact on how states and schools collect and use student data…What’s more four federal laws prohibit the creation of a federal database with students’’ personally identifiable information.”


 

On Our Reading List:

Cuomo Says It’s Up to Education Department to Restore Faith in Common Core / WBFO NPR Buffalo
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said the state Department of Education did a “terrible job” implementing the Common Core, and it’s incumbent upon those officials to restore public faith. “Common Core is the right idea,” Gov. Cuomo said. “but it was poorly implemented. [The New York Board of Regents] lost the faith and trust of the parents of this state. They’re going to have to remedy that.”

Study: The Real Reason Some People Don’t Like ObamaCore, Er, Common Core / The Seventy-Four Million
A study by the University of Southern California finds mixed opinions and widespread misinformation about the Common Core among the public. The paper concludes that opinions on testing, school funding and perceptions about the standards are correlated with opinions of the Obama administration. “Although the Obama administration had nothing to do with the creation of the standards,” the article notes, “President Obama and the Common Core have become inextricably entangled.” “The results of the upcoming presidential election may decrease opposition somewhat,” the paper says.