Monthly Archives: August 2013

The road to Common Core hell is paved with good intentions

A recent op-ed in Newsday “Implementation of Common Core is a recipe for disaster”   pinpoints two reasons why CCSS are unlikely to live up to their promised goals:

“If the Common Core standards – which are meant to define what knowledge and skills should be acquired by students during their K-12 education – are not integrated into the American education system with care, any positive attributes that they may have will be washed out by incoherence, misalignment and evaporation of political support.”

Recent developments are coalescing to form the perfect storm to put the promise of a national education curriculum into the equivalent of ISS (In school suspension). One is the recently announced costs of the tests – $30 per student, purportedly three times what Georgia, for one,  has typically spent for testing. This announcement triggered Georgia to immediately drop out of the testing consortium  “Georgia school chief explains Common Core test retreat: We couldn’t afford it.”

No doubt other states will be faced with budget pressure to withdraw from the testing consortium as well. Add to this the political heat many state superintendents are increasingly feeling from constituents who are resisting any further federal influence over states’ education policy and curriculum standards, and you have the recipe for the balkanization of testing and accountability. And if the predicted decline in test scores materializes, due to the more rigorous nature of the tests, (“Test Scores Sink as New York Adopts Tougher Benchmarks”)   we will more than likely witness a rerun of the No Child Left Behind shuffle – the feds granting waivers to states who “show progress” despite being unable to meet the proficiency standards of the law. As the saying goes, “Plus ca change…”