COMMON CORE STANDARDS DAILY UPDATE // MARCH 24, 2016

News You Can Use:

Advocating for Consistent, Rigorous Academic Standards for Military Students | Military Families for High Standards
The Collaborative for Student Success has partnered with military families to launch the Military Families for High Standards coalition. “Teaching students to robust K-12 education standards – and assessing their progress – ensures that the children of our current service members and our veterans receive a high-quality education, no matter where they are,” explains Jim Cowen, director of military outreach at the Collaborative. “Common Core Standards are strongly supported by military families because these state-driven standards establish clear benchmarks and high expectations in core subjects that students should be able to meet upon graduation,” retired Army Maj. Gen. Spider Marks wrote last year.

Don’t Change the Rules at Half-Time | STAND for Children Colorado
Educators need time to “digest the changes to standards and assessments that have only been implemented in the past year or two,” writes Lauren Fine, a Colorado elementary-school teacher. “Legislation that seeks to pull us out of PARCC will only create more confusion and frustration for teachers and students…Please, don’t change the rules at halftime.” As Fine indicates, evidence shows high-quality assessments like PARCC do the best job of measuring the skills students need to become college- and career-ready. An analysis by Achieve this year finds 26 states have significantly closed their Honesty Gap by implementing high-quality assessments.

To Learn to Read, Kids Need Content Knowledge | The New Teacher Project
Children build literacy skills through content knowledge—“in other words, learning to read, write, and speak while learning about particular topics.” Integrating literacy and knowledge building has been a big shift of Common Core State Standards, which encourage the use of non-fiction texts and building literacy across subjects. “Under the Common Core Standards, it is still essential that in the early grades students learn how to read… and also acquire a solid foundation of broad context knowledge and vocabulary,” says Torrey Palmer, a Nevada teacher. Mike Petrilli of the Fordham Institute explains that the Common Core State Standards “incorporate the current evidence of…the milestones younger students need to pass to reach [college- and career-ready] goals.”


Correcting the Record:

Common Core Leads to ‘Sexualization’ of Children, Dallas-Area Senator Warns | Dallas Morning News
Texas State Senator Bob Hall claims Common Core State Standards indoctrinate students “into a liberal mind-set that includes the sexualization of students through sex education.” “Common Cores’ ‘crony elites’ have put in place an education plan that encourages the development of multicultural identities based on grievances against the nation,” Sen. Hall wrote in an email to constituents. The email goes on to say Common Core teaches homosexuality, liberal immigration policy and the breakdown of family. Sen. Hall’s claims are widely untrue; objective analysis has rejected claims Common Core State Standards push political or religious ideologies. Here is where Sen. Hall gets it wrong: http://forstudentsuccess.org/no-common-core-does-not-cause-sexualization-of-students/

Is Common Core’s Effect on Achievement Fading? | Education Week
The Common Core “may have already had its biggest impact,” argues Tom Loveless of the Brookings Institution. Pointing to findings that between 2013 and 2015 students in non-adoption states made larger gains than those in Common Core states, Loveless suggests: “Most people when they think about Common Core, they think we won’t see an impact for 10 years…This [research] is telling me the opposite.” But, most experts agree it’s too early to determine how Common Core State Standards are affecting student assessment—which the Brookings Institution research affirms—and states leading implementation of the Common Core have achieved some of the biggest academic gains in the country. Here is where the article gets it wrong: http://forstudentsuccess.org/common-core-state-standards-are-raising-classroom-expectations-so-why-are-some-suggesting-they-are-past-their-prime/


On Our Reading List:

Educators, Civil Rights and Education Groups to Unveil a Testing Bill of Rights | Center for American Progress
Delaware Governor Jack Markell and National PTA President Laura Bay will join educators and civil rights leaders to announce a “Testing Bill of Rights.” “The Testing Bill of Rights articulates a middle ground on standardized tests through which tests are in service of instruction, not the other way around,” the advisory notes. It “aims to help move toward better, fairer, and fewer tests and reduce burden on students and educators.”