Additional Information Provided by Oklahoma State Department of Education regarding Common Core State Standards At the request of Representative
Kern, the State Department of Education appreciates the opportunity to provide the committee with some additional information on Common Core State Standards following the interim study presented in October. In this document, for the sake of clarity, items which were presented by Jenni White during the interim study have been referenced as slides, with additional information from SDE bullet-pointed below each. Slide 4 Presented by Jenni White, Restore Oklahoma Public Education (ROPE): Like all state legislatures that adopted CCSS early on in the process, Oklahoma passed the bill adopting them before they had been made available for full review. Additional Information Provided by SDE: The final CCSS were released on June 2, 2010 (The draft college and career ready graduation standards were released for public comment in September 2009; and the draft K-12 standards were released for public comment in March 2010). http://www.corestandards.org/news The Oklahoma State legislature directed the State Board to adopt the CCSS on or before 8/1/10. The Oklahoma State Board adopted the CCSS in English Language Arts and Math on 6/24/10. The Governor confirmed the adoption on 7/6/2010. Standards were finalized well before the State Board vote, and Oklahoma had access to all drafts and was part of the review process throughout. Each time a draft was released, the State Department of Education provided feedback. In March 2010, a public draft was released for general public comment, and SDE also sent surveys out to teachers statewide seeking input. The CCSS K-12 Standards Development Teams, also included the following OK representatives: 1. Chuck Pack, National Board Certified Teacher (NBCT), Mathematics Department Chair, Mathematics Curriculum Coordinator, Tahlequah Public Schools District and Board of Directors, Oklahoma Education Association (Mathematics work team) 2. Kerri White, Assistant State Superintendent, Office of Student Support, Oklahoma State Department of Education (Mathematics work team) 3. Katherine Bishop, National Board Certified Teacher (NBCT), Exceptional Needs Educator, Putnam City Public Schools, National Education Association, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma (English Language Arts work team) * There were fifty-one representatives for the Mathematics work team and fifty for the English Language Arts work team. Additionally, the Common Core State Standards were not officially adopted until this past Legislative Session (Spring 2011). Slide 5 presented by Jenni White: National Origins of the Common Core State Standards Additional Information provided by SDE: The CCSS, an effort led by state education chiefs and governors through their representative organizations, the National Governor’s Association (NGA) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), were the result of states working together for nearly a decade to set their end of high school standards, with their higher education and business community, at a college and career ready level. As states raised their standards they found that their expectations in math
and English were not only more rigorous but becoming increasingly common. A report issued in July of 2008 noted this trend: “Out of Many, One: Toward Rigorous Common Core Standards from the Ground Up” http://www.achieve.org/commoncore. The CCSS Initiative took this state-led effort to the next level, creating a full set of K-12 standards. Quotes from the July 2008 report provide additional context: o “This report demonstrates that state education policymakers—focusing on their own goals, working with their own constituents and on their own timetables—will put in place rigorous, competitive standards that prepare all students for college and careers.“ o “Voluntary, state-led alignment efforts that have resulted in a common core should not be confused with calls for the federal government to set national standards. The common core discussed in this report came about organically, through action by individual states, working in their states to identify what their high school graduates need to know. The common core reflects the reality of the world—that there is fundamental knowledge in English and mathematics that all graduates must know to succeed and that is not bound by state lines— but the common core also respects the traditional role of state decision making in education.”
Slide 6: 1996 - Achieve, Inc. was formed by the “nation’s governors and corporate leaders” and NCEE at the ‘96 Education Summit in Palisades, NY. Main goal of Achieve was to benchmark education standards and assessments in order to make the 1994 reforms “lasting.” Additional information provide by SDE: Achieve was founded at the 1996 Education Summit by a bipartisan group of governors and business leaders. Achieve’s mission was (and is) to support states in standards-based education reform. http://www.achieve.org/about-achieve NCEE had no role in the formation of Achieve. Slide 7: 2008 - Achieve, Inc., The National Governor’s Association (NGA) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) produced Benchmarking for Success: Ensuring Students Receive a World-Class Education. Called for Washington to implement “tiered incentives” to push states to adopt “common core” standards Additional information provided by SDE: Placing this statement in context may be helpful. The language used in the report was – “As states reach important milestones on the way toward building internationally competitive education systems, the federal government should offer a range of tiered incentives to make the next stage of the journey easier, including increased flexibility in the use of federal funds and in meeting federal educational requirements and providing more resources to implement worldclass educational best practices.” Nothing in the report suggested, “pushing states to adopt common core standards.” At the time the report was written, the CCSS effort was not yet underway. Slide 7: No public hearings – Congressional or otherwise - were ever held on Race to the Top or any of the separate initiatives. Additional information provided by SDE:
While no specific hearings were held on Race to the Top, there were public hearings on the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (of which Race to the Top was a part).
Slide 8: Achieve creates America’s Choice through Marc Tucker’s NCEE to “…serv[e] every aspect of that required by Race to the Top.” Additional information provided by SDE: Achieve was not involved in the creation of America’s Choice. America’s Choice began as a program of the National Center on Education and the Economy (NCEE), a not-for-profit organization headquartered in Washington, D.C. In the autumn of 2004, America’s Choice was reorganized as a for-profit subsidiary of NCEE. NCEE was founded in 1988. Slide 10-11 Cost of the CCSS Additional information provided by SDE: While there will be technology upgrades associated with the transition to the Common Core, many Oklahoma districts are already ahead of the curve in their technology upgrades. These are upgrades that should happen regardless of adoption of the CCSS. Oklahoma appropriates money for textbooks, curriculum and professional development. Existing funds will be used in the implementation of the CCSS. SDE has created a grassroots network of voluntary coordinating school districts at no cost to taxpayers called the REAC3H Network (Regional Educators Advancing College, Career and Citizen Readiness Higher). This network of school districts across the state helps the agency in assisting and preparing all districts for the adoption of major reforms (such as the state’s new 3rd grade graduation requirement and A-F report cards for schools); a new Teacher and Leader Effectiveness System; and the transition to the Common Core. The advantage of working with other states, and having common standards, means that Oklahoma will be able to take advantage of economies of scale to use the materials that other states and districts have developed – if Oklahoma decides they are beneficial for students. No state has reversed its adoption of the CCSS. States recognize that the CCSS are better than what they replaced. Slide 12 -16 Criticisms of CCSS Additional information from SDE: Of the 29 members of the Validation Committee involved in developing the CCSS, all but 5 certified that the Common Core State Standards in English language arts and mathematics are consistent with the criteria established in the charge to the Validation Committee. A slide provided by Jenni White highlights the comments of two of those five (Stotsky and Milgram). However, this slide does not mention overwhelming support. This additional information may provide context (bolded names supported): 1. Bryan Albrecht 2. Arthur Applebee 3. Sarah Baird 4. Jere Confrey 5. David T. Conley 6. Linda Darling-Hammond
7. Samuel DeWitt 8. Alfinio Flores 9. Brian Gong 10. Kenji Hakuta 11. Kristin Buckstad Hamilton 12. Feng-Jui Hsieh 13. Mary Ann Jordan 14. Jeremy Kilpatrick 15. Jill Martin 16. James Milgram 17. David Pearson 18. Steve Pophal 19. Stanley Rabinowitz 20. Lauren Resnick 21. Andreas Schleicher 22. William Schmidt 23. Catherine Snow 24. Christopher Steinhauser 25. Sandra Stotsky 26. Dorothy Strickland 27. Martha Thurlow 28. Norman Webb 29. Dylan William The methodology on Porter’s research has been questioned – http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/rick_hess_straight_up/2011/10/straight_up_conversation_be rkeley_math_professor_emeritus_hung-hsi_wu_on_the_common_core.html There may be some misunderstanding regarding the CCSS in information provided by John Jensen. For example, one of the benefits of the math standards is that there are fewer topics, allowing for more practice and depth, just the thing Jensen seems to be looking for. Dave Conley (on the validation committee) is a supporter of the CCSS (he’s a technical advisor for SBAC assessment consortia). The K-12 CCSS in English and math are aligned with the academic (content and skill) preparation students need to succeed in college and careers. Math and English are core foundational academic subjects needed for success but they are not a complete recipe for what it means to be prepared—nor were they intended to be. In reference to slide 16—the CCSS are not a national curriculum. Standards are the goals; curriculum is the method by which those goals are achieved. Curriculum decisions have always been—and always will be—the purview of states and districts to determine what works best for their students. States and districts will, of course, have the benefit of using curricula that others have created, if they so choose. Standards are the foundation for every education system. For too long (and especially compared to our international competitors) standards were set too low and did not reflect what students needed to know to be successful (as evidenced by high rates of remediation and employers, even in the current economy, not being able to find workers with the skills they need for the jobs they have). If standards are too low then the whole system—curricula, assessments, materials etc.—aims too low and results will be poor. Still, standards are just the beginning and without intentional full implementation they alone will not lead to high achievement.
Slides 17-19 (English Language Arts CCSS) Additional information provided by SDE “National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) has always maintained the stance of an independent critic throughout this process and continues to believe that we best serve our members and literacy learners by focusing efforts on helping teachers meet the challenges they face in the classroom rather than offering a summary judgment of these or other standards.” – from the March 10, 2010, open letter to NCTE members from Jeff Williams, Chair, NCTE Review Team: http://www.ncte.org/standards/commoncore NCTE has a section of their website dedicated to Common Core State Standards Resources: http://www.ncte.org/standards/commoncore The CCSS has a stronger emphasis on informational text than many states’ previous standards. There is also an emphasis on literacy in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects. Extensive research establishes the need for college and career ready students to be proficient in reading complex informational text. Most of the required reading in college and workforce training programs is informational in structure and challenging in content. Students must establish a base of knowledge across a wide range of subject matter by engaging with works of quality and substance. Slides 20-23 (Math CCSS) Additional information provided by SDE: There has been widespread support for the CCSS, including from national content groups (National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM), the National Council of Supervisors of Mathematics (NCSM), the Association of State Supervisors of Mathematics (ASSM), and the Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators (AMTE). Higher education organizations (including the American Association of Colleges for Teachers Education, American Association of Community Colleges, American Association of State Colleges and Universities, American Council on Education, and the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities) have also supported the CCSS. See the full list here: http://www.corestandards.org/about-the-standards/statements-of-support The Fordham Foundation gave the CCS math standards an ASlide 24: CCS Science Standards Additional information provided by SDE: There are no CCSS Science Standards. 20 States are working together to create Next Generation Science Standards aligned to the NRC’s Framework. The Framework is not a set of standards. More about the process can be found here: http://www.nextgenscience.org/ Oklahoma is not one of the 20 leading states. Slides 31-35: What Other Organizations Say about the CCSS Additional information provided by SDE: Achieve’s polling data demonstrates strong support for the CCSS – http://www.achieve.org/PublicPerceptionCCSS
The CCSS are not federal. The question on slide 32 references federal standards. The CCSS do not prescribe a curriculum. The question on slide 33 references a prescribed curriculum.
Slide 40: Now that the CCSS have been in public purview for some time and more is being learned about them, five different states are considering various stages of their repeal -- Minnesota, South Carolina, New Hampshire, Utah and Massachusetts Additional information from SDE: We have been unable to find any substantive consideration of repealing adoption of the CCSS in the states referenced in this slide.