States adopt new Common Core standards

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For the past five years, education specialist have been developing the Common Core and over the whole nation, many schools have adopted these new standards to replace No Child Left Behind.

“It’s a new set of national standards created to give the standard of learning a boost across the nation,” said Assistant Principal Michael Shepherd.

Throughout the United States, each state had their own rules and regulations on state testing and curriculum. Now 26 states have adopted this Common Core and the playing fields are becoming more even.

“Between each state, our scores can now be compared.  No Child Left Behind allowed too much flexibility within each state, so they had their own standards,” said Dr. Shepherd.

According to AP Language and Composition teacher Dr. William Combs, “the perception that students are not ready for college has set a goal for everyone, nationwide, to be on the same level intellectually.”

English teacher Candis Harrell said, “It’s really going to level the academic playing field.”

Common Core is coming to replace No Child Left Behind.  Many teachers, administration members, students, and parents believed that it failed because it focused on the wrong issues.

“There’s going to be less emphasis on what you know and more on how you use it.  What is actually going to change is how instructions are being delivered, and how the students are taught to apply it,” said Dr. Shepherd. “In this day and age I could be out in the middle of a field and Google who the 22nd president was.  What I can’t do is instantly know the impact he had on our country and all of his accomplishments or mistakes.  It’s more about retaining the knowledge of what you learn as opposed to learning it and only needing to know it for the next week so you can test on it and forget it.”

With that being said, it is believed that Common Core will greatly increase the school’s reading and literacy levels, and many students will benefit.

“There will be more consistent monitoring, definitely.  Instead of having one test at the end of the year to see what students had learned, there will be smaller test throughout the year to keep track to see if they’re retaining that knowledge”, said Dr. Combs.

“The more a student is required to read and comprehend, the higher their literacy rate will become.  Common Core requires this, so yes, it will help,” said Ms. Harrell.

High school students will not be as largely effected by the new core practice coming into place.  The students who will really be effected are the younger ones who are just now starting kindergarden up to 5th grade.

“This is definitely the intention.  We want to level the playing field for college and careers,” said Dr. Combs.

“Even now it’s different.  I have a first and a third grader in school, and I went to conferences yesterday.  The teachers are already talking about how thing will be applied differently,” said Dr. Shepherd.

All of the teachers seem very optimistic about Common Core coming into place, and believe that it is a move in the right direction.

“I love it!  The standards are high, and the content is interesting,” said Ms. Harrell.

“This is definitely a move in the right direction. I support the Common Core”, Dr. said Combs.

“I’m very excited.  This is exactly where we have to move from knowledge to education in today’s world.  You can get knowledge so easily today,” said Dr. Shepherd. “It will help usher these students to become productive citizens of the world.”

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