Better Alternatives to the Common Core Are Out There

National Association of Scholars

Writing in the Washington Post, NAS board member Sandra Stotsky responded to an earlier Post op-ed arguing that the Common Core is better than alternative standards for K-12 education. The authors she answered, Mike Petrilli and Michael Brickman of the Fordham Institute, wrote that "the basic problem is that it's impossible to draft standards that prepare students for college and career readiness and that look nothing like Common Core.” 

In reply, Stotsky, who is a professor emerita of higher education reform at the University of Arkansas and who served on the National Validation Committee for the Common Core State Systemic Initiative, wrote that "Massachusetts once had standards that looked nothing like Common Core, were judged to be among the best in the country, and have an empirical record of contributing to academic gains for all Bay State students, as judged by National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) tests in grades 4 and 8, in reading and math, from 2005 on, and by The International Mathematics and Science Surveys (TIMSS) in 2007 and 2013."

These standards received support from the teachers and schools in the state, and they produced results, including "[accelerating] the academic achievement of minority groups]." 

Stotsky concluded, "Why don’t Fordham Institute’s Petrilli and Brickman, or Common Core defender Jeb Bush, ask each Department of Education or Department of Public Instruction in each state to send out a survey to all the state’s English, mathematics, and science teachers just asking for anonymous suggestions on how to revise the state’s Common Core-based standards? We would soon find out how welcome a different set of standards would be."

Image: Pixabay, Public Domain 

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