Wisconsin Social Studies Standards

May 10, 2013

I was informed earlier this week that the State Superintendent has decided to indefinitely pause social studies standards revision in Wisconsin.  I do not have a timeline for work to continue.

In the meantime, I am brainstorming with myself (always fun!) to find ways to support, encourage, and provide guidance for our social studies teachers.  We need ways to bring the 1998 Wisconsin Model Academic STandards for Social Studies into 2013 and encourage the addition of the CCSS for Literacy, the Partnership for 21st Century Skills, the media literacy/technology standards, and the C3 framework into social studies classrooms across the state.  I know that some of you are doing this -- and I'm working on getting feedback from teachers around the state. 

I will also be meeting with leaders from state social studies organizations to see how we can partner and combine limited resources to help teachers.  After all - isn't that what it's all about?

April 24, 2013

A suggested Leadership Team roster has been sent to the State Superintendent for approval.  As soon as that goes through, things will start moving quickly!

The Leadership Team consists of 21 K-16 educators from around the state.  Every CESA is represented, as is every strand of social studies.  The plan is to meet on June 13-14 to begin the work of reviewing/revising/rewriting our state standards in social studies. 

I also have over 80 people volunteering to be involved in early rounds of feedback.  What great rockstars we have in Wisconsin! 

Timeline:  at the moment, I am planning to have (fingers crossed!) a public draft by the end of 2013. 

In mid-May, I will release a survey for social studies educators asking what YOU need from new standards.  This data will be analyzed by the Leadership Team to help determine direction for social studies in Wisconsin. 

The Leadership Team will also be reviewing (not a complete listing):
  • The proposed C3 framework that will be released by CCSSO
  • Standards from states who have recently completed revisions, such as Minnesota, Kansas, and Nebraska. 
  • The "Guardian of Democracy" report from the Civic Mission for Schools.
  • The CCSS for Literacy in All Subjects.

If you have questions or comments, please feel free to contact me!

Mid-February, 2013

The meeting in Atlanta regarding the proposed CCSSO framework for social studies standards is over.  It is anticipated that the framework will be released in June, 2013. 

Discussions with other states are in early stages right now, and I'm unsure where those conversations will go.  Although there is interest in combining resources to write common standards, without the umbrella organization of CCSSO supporting the work, it is difficult to say how it would work out. 

One thing to note:  it has been made very clear to me that Wisconsin does not formally adopt frameworks.  These will NOT be new standards, but will possibly be used to establish new standards in the state.  Until that time, educators should continue to use the Wisconsin Model Academic Standards for Social Studies and the CCSS for Literacy in All Subjects. 

I have permission to move forward on establishing a Social Studies Leadership Team.  This team will be responsible for suggestion a direction for Wisconsin Social Studies to move to the State Superintendent, as well as drafting new standards that can stand next to the CCSS and NGSS. 

I am anticipating a few different levels of involvement.  If this is work that interests you, please fill out the survey found here:  http://bit.ly/C3workWII cannot guarantee that anyone will be chosen for the work, but I am looking for rockstar educators from across the state to help out. 

The first meeting is tentatively set for late May or mid-June. 

Questions?  Feel free to email me!

January 9, 2013

An outline for a framework for states writing social studies standards was released by the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), the umbrella organization for the multi state work that has been done the last three years.  CCSSO has stated very clearly that they are not standards, and that they will never support standards being published under their name. 

This puts us in a difficult position.  We are in limbo as we try to figure out what this means for Wisconsin.

The State Superintendent has asked me to talk to my counterparts in other states who may be interested in combining resources to write standards to correspond to the framework, which is supposed to be released sometime this spring.  The first of those meetings is in early February.

Until new standards are written, the social studies standards for Wisconsin are still the Wisconsin Model Academic Standards in Social Studies from 1998. 

November 14, 2012

I am sorry to announce that the C3 draft standards will not be released on November 17, although there will be an "overview".  As soon as I have information, I will post it here. 

All of the feedback sessions planned around the state between Nov 19 and Dec 14 have been cancelled.  Anyone who RSVPed was emailed today. 

Stay tuned for more info on this roller coaster ride!

October 11, 2012

I have a series of feedback/listening sessions planned for educators around the state to attend between November 19 and December 14.  For more information on these sessions, go to the main page for C3 Listening Sessions

Fall 2012

It's almost here!  The College, Career and Civic Life (C3): State Standards for Social Studies will be released in draft format at the NCSS conference in Seattle on November 17, 2012.  There will be a window of time where individuals, districts and institutions can provide feedback on the suggested standards. 

I am in the process of setting up 2-hour feedback/listening sessions on the C3 standards around the state.  There will be at least one in every CESA.  We'll spend some time walking through the standards, and there will be time to talk and reflect amongst the group, as well.  Since official feedback on the standards is at the multi-state level, this is my only real opportunity to hear from the educators in Wisconsin. 

Sessions will be held between Nov 25 and Dec 10.  They will mostly be scheduled either at 9-11am or 2-4 pm.  Some may be scheduled in the evening.  They will be open to teachers and district administrators.  As soon as I know the schedule (hopefully by Oct 19 or so), I will post it here and announce it to the listserv. 

There will also be at least two online webinars with a similar (shorter) format.  As soon as I know the "live" dates, I'll set the webinar dates and times and announce those, as well. 

Questions before then?  Drop me a line!

*Update - February/March 2012

The Common Core State Standards in English Language Arts has a literacy component that will affect social studies teachers in Wisconsin. We've had some exciting discussions about what the new Common Core State Standards for Literacy in All Subjects mean for social studies teachers, and with the help of a small team of educators from across the state, have established a Google Site for "Disciplinary Literacy in Social Studies" with resources and ideas. 

The site is meant to be interactive and evolving.  If there are things that you're doing in your district, please feel free to join the site and upload your ideas!  The more we're able to help each other, the better it will be for our Wisconsin students. 

As we move into a time period of new standards on the horizon for social studies in Wisconsin, the Department of Public Instruction has entered discussions with 20 other states and 15 content organizations to discuss a common framework of social studies.
This is a state-led effort - it is multi-state. It is national, but not federal - Congress and the president have nothing to do with the guidelines we are discussing.
This work is being done through a collaborative under the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO). It is not associated with the Common Core State Standards recently released by CCSSO and the National Governor's Association (NGA).
The National Council for the Social Studies, along with the other 14 content organizations, wrote a new definition of social studiesin early 2010. This new definition is a guiding point of the CSS_SS work.
The social studies is an interdisciplinary exploration of the social sciences and humanities, including civics, history, economics, and geography in order to develop responsible, informed and engaged citizens and to foster civic, global, historical, geographic, and economic literacy.”
On May 18, 2011, EdWeek published an article about the work being done. It outlines the background for the "why", as well as some of the discussions we've had.

This is tough work! How could we possibly meet the needs of multiple states? Well, hold on to your hats - we'll see where we land!
Common State Standards in Social Studies Q&A
If you have questions or comments, please feel free to drop me a line at kristen.mcdaniel@dpi.wi.gov or (608) 266-2207.

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