Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Moving Forward with Common Core Standards
....... but Why?


Selections from the above article by Sarah Fine follow:

If there remains any doubt about the momentum of the Common Core State Standards Initiative, let it be abandoned once and for all. Thirty-six states and the District of Columbia, which collectively educate three-fourths of all school-age children in this country, have pledged to adopt the core. Intellectual gatekeepers have given the standards a resounding pass. Plans for implementation have begun. For better or worse, the boulder is on its way down the mountain, gathering strength and speed as it goes. ......

There is, though, one element of the core standards that could force teachers to narrow their instructional practices, and it is an area that remains as yet largely unexplored: assessment. .......

In the era of high-stakes standardized testing, however, what counts is what is most easily measurable. ..... This dramatically narrows the possibilities for innovative classroom teaching, and, based on my observations, accounts for much of the antipathy that teachers and administrators feel toward standards initiatives such as the common core. ......

The standards themselves do not confine teaching to the realm of the scripted or undemocratic, but without serious reflection and rethinking, they will.

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