MADISON, Ala. (WHNT) — The Common Core State Standards are designed to provide a consistent, clear understanding of what students are expected to learn, so teachers and parents know what they need to do to help them. But Madison educators say there is much misinformation and even fear when it comes to these educational benchmarks.
Madison City Schools Director of Secondary Instruction Camille Wright says Common Core is simply a set of core standards set forth for each state to provide a consistent progression of content for kindergarten to 12th grade.
“So the standards are really just objectives about what we are going to teach, it’s not about content,” Wright explains. “So there’s really nothing in the Common Core itself that someone could find objection to, now, maybe the way it’s being used or some other reason people might find objection to but the Common Core standards themselves are nothing more than a set of objectives.”
Wright says some may fear Common Core is some sort of federal edict from on high that relinquished curriculum control from local educators, when in fact, she says 85% of the Alabama College and Career Readiness Standards are composed of Common Core standards while the other 15% are a result of direct decisions by state and district educators.
“The benefit of this to places like Madison City is because we do have a transient population when a student moves here from Virginia, for example, if they are teaching the same progression of skills then we know when they come to us for 8th grade math, we know what they already have,” says Wright.
Wright says she also perceives a prevalent confusion between a standard or education benchmark and resources used to teach that standard; resources like textbooks.
“The resources you use to teach the Common Core are the only things someone could have an objection to at the district level.”
To help parents fully understand, the Madison City Schools Board of Education is hosting a Common Core resource showcase at the central office on Celtic Drive in Madison next Wednesday, May 22. The event will allow the public to review textbooks and materials used to tech Common Core standards and provide an opportunity for educators to address concerns and questions.