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Some people complain about, belittle, denigrate, and deride anything that has to do with Common Core State Standards (CCSS). Why, people, why?
Do you want the United States to be mediocre?
The U.S. ranks 22nd among developed countries in the number of students who graduate from high school. Education at a Glance, OECD 2011
Do you want products of our educational system (AKA our students) to be unable to complete globally?
Is keeping an educational system that has proven itself over and over NOT to work for the majority of students REALLY preferable to getting on board with a system that has generated valuable conversations and forced evaluation of current practices?
I would like to make a difference here between intelligent, thoughtful people who disagree with aspects of the CCSS and the more vocal naysayers who just want it to go away, but have nothing to offer in the way of constructive criticism or alternative ideas.
“Supporters…say the standards will increase the rigor and quality of American schools and put the U.S. back on the map in terms of educational excellence.” Connie Matthiessen, Learn More about Common Core
Detractors wonder, “Has the federal government overreached and saddled our schools with standards that have been flawed from the start?” Embrace the Common Core Debate, September 9, 2014 intelligencesquaredus.org
This ongoing debate is GOOD for our country. Supporters need to voice their support more often and detractors need to come up with sound arguments, not just ‘government conspiracy’ theories. The CCSS were not, in fact created by the federal government. Nor are they overseen by the federal government.
“The Common Core is a state-led effort that is not part of No Child Left Behind or any other federal initiative. The federal government played no role in the development of the Common Core. State adoption of the standards is in no way mandatory.” Myths vs. Facts www.corestandards.org
So let’s embrace the debate that is going on and contribute to it in a helpful way. Let’s do our homework before criticizing and let’s join the conversation rather than standing apart, throwing stones.
For my money, CCSS is the best hope for our educational system and has the potential to close the opportunity gaps that currently exist for our students. It may not be perfect, but I believe it is moving us in the right direction. If we work together, we can make it better.