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Sunday, October 24, 2010

Common Core Standards - Time Sensitive

From Concerned Teacher:

The last OSPI Public Forum on the Common Core Standards and SMARTER Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC) is being held tomorrow night (Monday)18560 1st Avenue NE, in Shoreline. The forum will be held from 6 to 7:30 p.m. in the Mount Rainier Room at Shoreline Center.

OSPI is also seeking public input at the forums and through an online survey (available to take until Oct 31) because it is required to deliver a detailed report on the common core standards in January 2011 to the state Legislature. Formal adoption and implementation of the new standards may not occur until after the 2011 legislative session, which will provide an opportunity for legislative review.

The forum will include information on how the new common core K-12 standards for English language arts and mathematics were created and how they build toward college and career readiness. In addition, the forum will contain information about:
* The SMARTER Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC) that was recently awarded a four-year $160 million grant to develop an assessment system for grades 3-8 and high school that's aligned with the Common Core State Standards.
* How the public can provide input so OSPI can determine what the transition would mean for Washington schools and districts.
* The process that would lead to the successful implementation about the common core standards if the state formally adopts them. OSPI will seek input from those attending about the resources schools and districts will need if the common core standards are formally adopted. email

Some light reading on the topic:
http://www.kdp.org/publications/pdf/record/fall10/Record_Fall_2010_Tienken.pdf

http://www.alfiekohn.org/teaching/edweek/national.htm

http://education.nationaljournal.com/2010/07/conflicting-research-on-core-s.php

Obviously there are both pros and cons, but I hope there is good enough attendance and enough questions asked that OSPI and the legislature to realize that they can't just slide this in.

(This is Melissa now. I believe that common core standards nationwide could be a good thing. We could save millions on testing alone if we agreed to a common assessment AND we would be able to accurately state how kids in Mississippi do against kids in Minnesota or Montana. However, this examination of common core standards means a long time to examine how to get there, develop the standards, develop the assessments and implement it. So we created the WASL and now the MSP/HSPE and now something else? You can't think too long about the money spent so far or you'll feel pretty sad. I haven't had a chance to look at these other websites that Concerned Teacher suggests but it probably a good idea.)

4 comments:

Sahila said...

Common Core State Standards: I Wonder?

Here's a particularly cogent assessment, along with research citations, to answer the author’s (Christopher Tienken) question:

“Does the premise for this initiative — the need for national curriculum standards and testing — actually hold up under review, even a superficial review?”


Common Core Standards: I Wonder?

ttln said...

Having spent time looking at the core with the WA State GLEs, looking for points of intersection and omission for the reading and writing standards, all I can say is that when (there is a timeline for implementation and testing) we adopt them as a state, I hope we do not LOWER our expectations of students. I wasn't note-taker for that day where the 6-8 LA departments met, and my personal notes are non-existent (why I am not note taker, typically), however, I remember finding areas that we taught (writing skills mainly) in 8th that weren't covered until the 9-12 core standards. The common core should be a minimum expectation- as a rule of thumbe-says WV.

Ramona Hattendorf said...

http://wssda.org/wssda/WebForms/En-Us/LegislativeAndGovernmentalIssues/LegislativeAssembly/presentations/20100924_preassembly_burke1.pdf

Above is state presentation from Dep Sup Alan Burke. (Also includes 6696 update and testing issue for high schoolers).

I've sat through several presentations on this initiative. 2 from OSPI; at least 2 from Wash State PTA. The upshot seems to be as Melissa summed it up:

Potentially, savings on standardized tests. Books was another issue cited by OSPI (content would be driven by common standards, not just preferences of Texas and other big buyers.) Military families seem keen on a common standard between states (not a huge concern here in Seattle, but PTA nationally has a fair number of military families as members.)

The Where's the Math group does not like math portion - feels it isn't strong enough and delays introduction of key concepts. They are recommending the legislature not adopt.

SCPTSA hasn't taken any sort of stance; but Wash State PTA is working on an education campaign to explain the concept of the core standards. (Yes - part of a Gates grant to national PTA.)

And yes: It would require yet another revision of standardized tests.

I asked the state's deputy sup, Alan Burke, if Seattle math curriculum was aligned to the proposed standards and he said yes.

I do not have any sort of feel for what sort of corresponding professional development might be required.

- Ramona Hattendorf, SCPTSA

Maureen said...

I asked the state's deputy sup, Alan Burke, if Seattle math curriculum was aligned to the proposed standards and he said yes.


Ramona, did you have a sense of whether he really meant curriculum as opposed to materials? It seems that administrators often interchange those words. I think I remember Dan Dempsey doing a fairly detailed comparison of 3rd (?) grade EDM materials and the state standards and finding that they make it almost impossible to cover state standards. I expect that there must be some defined SPS 'curriculum' that is based on state standards, but it sounded (from Dan's analysis) that it would take quite a bit of supplementation-and skipping chunks of the EDM text- to accomplish. (Sorry, I couldn't find Dan's post from a quick look at The Math Underground.)