Anyone who's been following the debate over national standards knows that two weeks ago, the National Governors Association (NGA) together with the Council of Chief State Schools Officers (CCSSO) released the much-anticipated public draft of the K-12 math and English language arts (ELA) Common Core State Standards.[quote]
These standards had already garnered a lot of attention even before this draft was released, with people weighing in with praise and criticism about the details of the standards themselves, about what rigorous, college-readiness standards should look like, and about whether states should even have (voluntary) common standards.
Today, thanks to our expert reviewers???Sheila Byrd Carmichael for ELA and W. Stephen Wilson and Gabrielle Martino for math???we are releasing our appraisal of these standards.
While there are certainly ways to improve these drafts, which are detailed in the reviews, our experts believe that these are rigorous college-readiness standards that would raise expectations in math and ELA classrooms across the country.
On the math side, while some tweaks are needed, particularly to the organization of the high school expectations, our reviewers found rigorous, internationally-competitive standards that earn an impressive A-.
On the ELA side, the draft standards earn a solid B. And with some clarification of vague standards and the addition of more references to specific content that students must know in order to demonstrate mastery of the essential college-readiness skills outlined by the draft, these standards have the potential to be top notch.