What are educational standards?
Educational standards help teachers ensure their students have the skills and knowledge they need to be successful by providing clear goals for student learning.
What is the Common Core State Standards Initiative?
The Common Core State Standards Initiative is a state-led effort that established a single set of clear educational standards for kindergarten through 12th grade in English language arts and mathematics that states voluntarily adopt. The standards are designed to ensure that students graduating from high school are prepared to enter credit bearing entry courses in two or four year college programs or enter the workforce. The standards are clear and concise to ensure that parents, teachers, and students have a clear understanding of the expectations in reading, writing, speaking and listening, language and mathematics in school.
Who leads the Common Core State Standards Initiative?
The nation’s governors and education commissioners, through their representative organizations the National Governors Association (NGA) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) led the development of the Common Core State Standards and continue to lead the initiative. Teachers, parents, school administrators and experts from across the country together with state leaders provided input into the development of the standards.
Why is the Common Core State Standards Initiative important?
High standards that are consistent across states provide teachers, parents, and students with a set of clear expectations that are aligned to the expectations in college and careers. The standards promote equity by ensuring all students, no matter where they live, are well prepared with the skills and knowledge necessary to collaborate and compete with their peers in the United States and abroad.. Unlike previous state standards, which were unique to every state in the country, the Common Core State Standards enable collaboration between states on a range of tools and policies, including:
· the development of textbooks, digital media, and other teaching materials aligned to the standards;
· and the development and implementation of common comprehensive assessment systems to measure student performance annually that will replace existing state testing systems; and
· changes needed to help support educators and schools in teaching to the new standards.
Who was involved in the Common Core State Standards Initiative?
States across the country collaborated with teachers, researchers, and leading experts to design and develop the Common Core State Standards. Each state independently made the decision to adopt the Common Core State Standards, beginning in 2010. The federal government was NOTinvolved in the development of the standards. Local teachers, principals, and superintendents lead the implementation of the Common Core.
What guidance do the Common Core State Standards provide to teachers?
The Common Core State Standards are a clear set of shared goals and expectations for the knowledge and skills students need in English language arts and mathematics at each grade level to ultimately be prepared to graduate college and career ready. The standards establish what students need to learn, but they do not dictate how teachers should teach. Teachers will continue to devise lesson plans and tailor instruction to the individual needs of the students in their classrooms.
How do the Common Core State Standards compare to previous state standards?
The Common Core State Standards were written by building on the best and highest state standards in existence in the U.S., examining the expectations of other high performing countries around the world, and careful study of the research and literature available on what students need to know and be able to do to be successful in college and careers. No state in the country was asked to lower their expectations for their students in adopting the Common Core. The standards are evidence-based, aligned with college and work expectations, include rigorous content and skills, and are informed by other top performing countries. They were developed in consultation with teachers and parents from across the country so they are also realistic and practical for the classroom.
Will there be tests based on the Common Core State Standards?
Yes. States that adopted the Common Core State Standards are currently collaborating to develop common assessments that will be aligned to the standards and replace existing end of year state assessments. These assessments will be available in the 2014-2015 school year.
What is the appropriate way to cite the Common Core State Standards?
Authors: National Governors Association Center for Best Practices,
Council of Chief State School Officers
What makes this process different from other efforts to create common standards?
This process is state-led, and has support from across the country, including CCSSO, the NGACenter, Achieve, Inc, ACT, the College Board, the National Association of State Boards of Education, the Alliance for Excellent Education, the Hunt Institute, the National Parent Teacher Association, the State Higher Education Executive Officers, the American Association of School Administrators, and the Business Roundtable.
By what criteria were the standards developed?
The Standards made careful use of a large and growing body of evidence, including:
· Scholarly research;
· Surveys on what skills are required of students entering college and workforce training programs;
· Assessment data identifying college- and career-ready performance;
· Comparisons to standards from high-performing states and nations;
· National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) frameworks in reading and writing for English language arts; and
· Findings from Trends in International Mathematics and Science (TIMSS) and other studies concluding that the traditional US mathematics curriculum must become substantially more coherent and focused in order to improve student achievement.
In particular, the following criteria guided the development of the standards:
· Alignment with expectations for college and career success;
· Consistency across all states;
· Inclusion of content and the application of knowledge through high-order skills;
· Improvement upon current state standards and standards of top-performing nations;
· Reality-based, for effective use in the classroom; and
· Evidence and research-based
Are the standards internationally benchmarked?
Yes. International benchmarking played a significant role in both sets of standards. In fact, the college and career ready standards include an appendix listing the evidence that was consulted in drafting the standards and the international data used in the benchmarking process is included in this appendix.
Were teachers involved in the creation of the standards?
Yes. Teachers have been a critical voice in the development of the standards. The Common Core State Standards drafting process relied on teachers and standards experts from across the country. The National Education Association (NEA), American Federation of Teachers (AFT), National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM), and National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE), among other organizations were instrumental in bringing together teachers to provide specific, constructive feedback on the standards.
What grade levels are included in the Common Core State Standards?
The English language arts and math standards are for grades K-12. Research from the early childhood and higher education communities also informed the development of the standards.
What does this work mean for students with disabilities and English language learners?
The Common Core State Standards give states the opportunity to share experiences and best practices, which can lead to an improved ability to serve young people with disabilities and English language learners. Additionally, the standards include information on application of the standards for these groups of students.
Why are the Common Core State Standards for just English language arts and math?
English language arts and math were the subjects chosen for the Common Core State Standards because they are areas upon which students build skill sets which are used in other subjects. They are also the subjects most frequently assessed for accountability purposes.
Are there plans to develop common standards in other areas in the future?
CCSSO and NGA are not leading the development of standards in other academic content areas. Below is information on efforts of other organizations to develop standards in other academic subjects.
· Science: In a process managed by Achieve, with the help of the National Research Council, the National Science Teachers Association, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science, states are developing the Next Generation Science Standards. More information about this effort can be found here.
· World Languages: The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages published an alignment of the National Standards for Learning Languages with the ELA Common Core State Standards. More information about this effort can be found here.
· Arts: The National Coalition for Core Arts Standards is leading the revision of the National Standards for Arts Education. More information about this effort can be found here.
What do the Common Core State Standards mean for students?
The standards provide clarity and consistency in what is expected of student learning across the country. This initiative helps provide all students with an equal opportunity for an education, regardless of where they live. The Common Core State Standards will not prevent different levels of achievement among students, but they will ensure more consistent exposure to materials and learning experiences through curriculum, instruction, and teacher preparation among other supports for student learning.
How does the Common Core State Standards impact teachers?
The Common CSS impacts teachers by:
· Providing goals and benchmarks to ensure students are achieving certain skills and knowledge by the end of each year;
· Helping colleges and professional development programs better prepare teachers;
· Providing the opportunity for teachers to be involved in the development of assessments linked to these top-quality standards;
· Allowing states to develop and provide better assessments that more accurately measure whether or not students have learned what was taught; and
· Guiding educators toward curricula and teaching strategies that will give students a deep understanding of the subject and the skills they need to apply their knowledge.
Who will manage the Common Core State Standards Initiative in the future?
The Common Core State Standards Initiative was and will remain a state-led effort. In addition to supporting effective implementation of the Common Core State Standards, NGA and CCSSO are committed to developing a long-term sustainability structure with leadership from governors, chief state school officers, and other state policymakers. There will be an ongoing state-led development process that can support continuous improvement of the standards.
Will common assessments be developed?
Two consortia of states are developing common assessments – the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Career (PARCC) and the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC). These state-led consortia on assessment are grounded in the following principles:
· Allow for comparison across students, schools, districts, states and nations;
· Create economies of scale;
· Provide information and support more effective teaching and learning; and
· Prepare students for college and careers.
Will CCSSO and NGA be creating common instructional materials and curricula?
States that have adopted the standards may choose to work together to develop instructional materials and curricula. As states join together to adopt the same Common Core State Standards, publishers of instructional materials and experienced educators will develop new resources around these shared standards.
Does the federal government play a role in standards implementation?
The federal government had no role in the development of the Common Core State Standards and will not have a role in their implementation. The Common Core State Standards Initiative is a state-led effort that is not part of No Child Left Behind and adoption of the standards is in no way mandatory.
Do these standards incorporate both content and skills?
· Classic myths and stories from around the world;
· America’s Founding Documents;
· Foundational American literature: and
The remaining crucial decisions about what content should be
taught are left to state and local determination. In addition to content
coverage, the Common Core State Standards require that students systematically
acquire knowledge in literature and other disciplines through reading, writing,
speaking, and listening.
· whole numbers;
· fractions; and
Taken together, these elements support a student’s ability to learn and apply more demanding math concepts and procedures. The middle school and high school standards call on students to practice applying mathematical ways of thinking to real world issues and challenges; they prepare students to think and reason mathematically.
How complex are the texts suggested by the English language arts standards?
The Common Core State Standards create a staircase of increasing text complexity, so that students are expected to both develop their skills and apply them to more and more complex texts. For example, the English language arts standards suggest “Grapes of Wrath” as a text that would be appropriate for 9th or 10th grade readers. For more information, please see Appendix A and the Supplement to Appendix A.
Do the English language arts standards include a reading list or any other reference to content?
The Common Core State Standards include sample texts that demonstrate the level of text complexity appropriate for the grade level and compatible with the learning demands set out in the standards. The exemplars of high quality texts at each grade level provide a rich set of possibilities and have been very well received. This ensures teachers have the flexibility to make their own decisions about what texts to use, while providing an excellent reference point when selecting their texts.
What type of texts are recommended for the English language arts standards?
The Common Core State Standards require certain critical content for all students. In addition to content coverage, the standards require that students systematically acquire knowledge in literature and other disciplines through reading, writing, speaking, and listening. English teachers will still teach their students literature as well as literary non-fiction. However, because college and career readiness overwhelming focuses on complex texts outside of literature, these standards also ensure students are being prepared to read, write, and research across the curriculum, including in history and science.
Do the math standards cover all the key math topics in the proper sequence?
The mathematical progressions presented in the Common Core State Standards are coherent and based on evidence. Part of the problem with having 50 different sets of state standards is that different states cover different topics at different grade levels. Coming to consensus guarantees that from the viewpoint of any given state, topics will move up or down in the grade level sequence. This is unavoidable. What is important to keep in mind is that the progression in the Common Core State Standards is mathematically coherent and leads to college and career readiness at an internationally competitive level.
Additional FAQs from the December 10, 2013 Board Meeting
1. How were the Standards Developed?
In 2009, the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) and the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices (NGA) committed to developing a set of standards that would help prepare students for success in college and career. The State Board of Education (SBE) President, the State Superintendent of Public Instruction (SSPI), and the Governor of California agreed to participate in the initiative to develop Common Core State Standards (CCSS). Stakeholders from nearly every state started to develop the CCSS using feedback from review teams that included K–12 teachers, postsecondary faculty, curriculum and assessment experts, researchers, and national organizations such as the National Institute for Early Education Research and the National Center on Educational Outcomes.
A draft version of the Common Core State Standards was released in March, 2010 for public comment with approximately 10,000 comments submitted. The final version was released in June, 2010.
The Academic Content Standards Commission (ACSC) reviewed the State Standards for alignment to California standards and developed recommendations for standards to supplement the Common Core State Standards in California. In August 2010 the State Board of Education adopted the Common Core State Standards, including California specific standards, as recommended by the ACSC. The SBE also directed the California Department of Education (CDE) staff to develop a plan and timeline for implementation of the standards.
2. Who Developed the Standards?
A 25-member Validation Committee (VC) was convened to provide independent, expert validation of the process of identifying the Common Core State Standards. The individuals selected for the VC included State superintendents, education commissioners, teachers, professors, and principals who have experience in the development or implementation of national or international standards in education or have a demonstrated record of exceptional or unique expertise in English language arts, mathematics, or a related field, such as special education, English language learners, assessments, or curriculum development. The committee’s purpose was to examine the Standards for evidence they could instill college and career-readiness skills and assess the evidentiary base for the Standards. Once validated by this committee, the NGA and CCSSO assembled to develop the K-12 Standards that are now the Common Core State Standards.
3. Are the Common Core Standards a “one-size fits all” education?
No. Common Core offers more differentiation, deeper thinking opportunities, real-world connections and metacognitive thinking. It is important to understand that the Common Core State Standards are NOT curriculum. Standards are simply a set of knowledge and skills that a student should master at each grade level. They reflect the “what” a student should know. Curriculum refers to “how” a student will be taught. The Common Core State Standards do not require that educators teach with specific materials or methods.
The Common Core State Standards will not prevent different levels of achievement among students, but they will ensure more consistent exposure to materials and learning experiences through curriculum, instruction and teacher preparation among other supports for student learning. Teachers will continue to devise lesson plans and tailor instruction to the individual needs of the students in their classrooms.
4. How will we gauge the success of the Common Core State Standards?
We have an assessment program utilized to measure student achievement. Additionally we will be monitoring student progress through the use of interim assessments. This is a research based strategy that supports the teaching and learning going on in the classroom daily.
5. Why is the District making this change now?
The San Ramon Valley Unified School District bases instruction on "Standards and Benchmarks" for each academic curriculum. Our District has always implemented the California State Standards in English/Language Arts, Mathematics, History-Social Science, Science and Physical Education adopted in 1997 and has developed our own, very rigorous standards in other subject areas. In 2010, the State adopted the Common core State Standards which are an improvement on current standards.
It is now 2013 and the expectation from the State is that all districts are implementing the new State-adopted Standards. SRVUSD has been training teachers on the Common Core Standards and implementing the strategies since the fall of 2012.
The new assessments will be in place in 2014-2015 and our students need to be prepared to take those assessments which will be based on the Common Core Standards.
6. What would be the impact on State test results if we do not adopt CC?
The mandated State assessments are aligned with Common Core State Standards. Our students would not be prepared to take these assessments, nor would they remain competitive within the state relative to other students of the same age. This is deeply concerning, as SRVUSD has the highest scores in the region. By not preparing our students to participate in mandated testing, we may fall to the bottom. STATE TESTS ARE REQUIRED.
The Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) is also linked to the adoption of the Common Core State Standards and districts must demonstrate that students make progress toward meeting proficiency on those Standards. Failure to do so for three years in a row could result in a State takeover of the District.
Assessments used to measure student readiness for college have been adjusted to align with Common Core. The College Board (responsible for the SAT and AP testing) was part of the Common Core development team. ETS (contracted by College Board to design much of the SAT) is also involved with developing the new Common Core State Standards exams.
7. Is data mining an issue we need to be concerned about?
The federal government does not have access to the student-level information housed in state data systems. Common Core is not a mechanism for federal data collection, nor does state implementation of Common Core and its related assessments require any data collection beyond the aggregate data authorized by No Child Left Behind.
California’s transition to the Common Core State Standards and aligned assessments will not change the type of student information the California Department of Education collects. The student information collected when a student is assessed will be the same as is currently collected and used. This information includes the students’ name, birth date, gender, race/ethnicity, and grade level.
The California Department of Education does not collect or maintain information on students’ religion, political party affiliation, biometric information, etc. that some have listed as possible areas of concern. The California Department of Education (CDE) does not plan to collect this information as it is irrelevant to students’ education.
8. Is the District legally required to adopt CC?
California’s Supreme Court in Hall vs. Taft, held that the public schools of California are a matter of statewide rather than local or municipal concern; that the operation and regulation are covered by the State Constitution and the State Legislature is given comprehensive powers over the schools subject only to any constitutional restrictions. With the State’s plenary power over K-12 public education, the State Board of Education decides on the Standards for all students from Kindergarten to high school.
At the November 12, 2013 board meeting, there was a reference to Education Code §33308.5 as a justification for districts not having to implement the Common Core Standards. Section 33308.5 states that the program guidelines issued by the State Department of Education shall be designed to serve as a model or example and shall not be prescriptive. According to legal counsel, Section 33308.5 does not apply in the case of the Common Core Standards. The CC are not program guidelines, they are content Standards for curriculum and instruction. They were not issued by the Department of Education, but rather were adopted by the State Board of Education.
One could argue that districts are not mandated to implement the Common Core State Standards. However, failure to implement CC at the district level is where the State’s plenary powers come in. The Common Core State Standards have become immediately interwoven into the funding mechanisms and program accountability for the public schools of this state. States are required to implement the Common Core Standards as condition of the Local Control Funding Formula Spending Plan, more commonly known as the Local Control Accountability Plan. Further failure to implement the Common Core Standards could potentially have a negative impact on our students’ performance on State mandated testing and on their preparation for college and career.
9. What is the timeline for implementation of CC?
The Common Core State Standards were adopted in August 2010. In 2011, Superintendent Torlakson began outreach to develop recommendations for a new assessment system and California joined the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium as a governing state. In 2012, the California Department of Education (CDE) released the Common Core Implementation Plan and California began preparing for the next generation, world-class assessment system by developing new curriculum frameworks, and building new professional development modules. AB 484 was signed into law on 10/2/13 establishing the California Measure of Academic Performance and Progress (CalMAPP) assessment system replacing the Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR). Students will be assessed in 2014-2015 and full implementation of Common Core will be realized in the 2015-16 school year.
Common Core State Standards (CCSS) Systems Implementation-Significant Milestones timeline is available through the California Department of Education at http://www.cde.ca.gov/re/cc/tl/index.asp
10. Is the District able to delay the implementation of CC for one year? What would be the consequence?
One consequence is that our students would not be prepared for the mandated State testing. This year we are preparing our students, and our schools on how to implement the tests. We are already implementing the Common Core Standards. Our students are already experiencing the deep rigor of the Common Core State Standards. Otherwise we would be teaching outdated standards that are being phased out.
Our students would not be as well prepared for other assessments that are aligned with Common Core State Standards such as SAT, ACT, and AP exams.
It is our understanding that there are no school districts in the State that have expressly refused to implement them or delay their implementation.
11. Why is the CC math website password protected so that the public cannot access it?
There may be some materials on the CC website that is copyright protected. For example, there is a link to another organization’s website, Silicon Valley Math Initiative, which is password protected. You need to be a member of SVMI to access this page. We are currently in process of insuring that all other documents are open to the public.
12. How will the interaction between student and teachers be different under CC?
The Common Core State Standards are a clear set of shared goals and expectations for the knowledge and skills students need in English language arts and mathematics at each grade level to ultimately be prepared to graduate college and be career ready. The Standards establish what students need to learn, but they do not dictate how teachers should teach. Teachers will continue to devise lesson plans and tailor instruction to the individual needs of the students in their classrooms.
13. How much flexibility will teachers have to select different books than those approved by CC?
The Common Core Standards do not dictate which texts must be taught. Our District has a core literature list from which teachers select their texts. Our core literature list is available for public viewing in the District website Curriculum Standards page at: http://srvusd.ca.schoolloop.com/file/1276351828080/1374484869793/7663694672546197856.pdf
14. Will instructional materials related to CC go through the normal vetting process?
Yes, our District will use the same process for adoption as outlined in Board Policy 6161.1
15. Is there acceleration available so that students may reach BC Calculus?
Yes, there are three ways to reach AP calculus AB or BC:
16. Does the District have the flexibility to implement higher standards than the CC Standards?
The State has adopted 100% of the Common Core Standards, as written, and the State of California is adopting an additional 15% as allowed for by Common Core Standards.
As always, teachers in the SRVUSD will continue to teach beyond the minimum standards and maintain a high level of rigor and expectations for students in our District.
17. Does CC lessen or dumb down the standards to bring a level of equality among all students?
No. As specified by CCSSO and NGA, the Standards are (1) research and evidence based, (2) aligned with college and work expectations, (3) rigorous, and (4) internationally benchmarked. A particular standard was included in the document only when the best available evidence indicated that its mastery was essential for college and career readiness in a twenty-first-century, globally competitive society. The Standards are intended to be a living work: as new and better evidence emerges, the Standards will be revised accordingly.
The Standards are an extension of a prior initiative led by CCSSO and NGA to develop College and Career Readiness (CCR) Standards in reading, writing, speaking, listening, and language as well as in mathematics. The CCR Reading, Writing, and Speaking and Listening Standards, released in draft form in September 2009, serve, in revised form, as the backbone for the present document.
Experts from across higher education (including but not limited to Harvard, UC Berkeley, University of Florida) local municipalities, state departments of education and local educators all developed and vetted the Common Core State Standards. The increased rigor of the ELA standards has also been reported and supported through the work of leading literacy experts relying on years of educational research. These expert voices include Stanford University’s Dr. Linda Darling Hammond, Columbia University’s Dr. Lucy Calkins, University of Illinois’ Dr. Tim Shanahan, The Leadership and Learning Center’s Dr. Douglas Reeves and Dr. James Marzano of the Marzano Research Center.
Research by William Schmidt, a distinguished professor at Michigan State University, leading expert on international mathematics performance and previous director of the U.S. Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (U.S. TIMSS), found that no state's previous math standards were as close a match (a 90 percent consistency rate) to those of high performing countries as the Common Core. Not even Massachusetts, which is widely viewed as having the highest standards in the nation.
Dr. James Milgram’s assertion that the math standards set “low expectations” for students has been refuted by the conservative Fordham Institute study that found the Common Core Standards are superior to the math standards in the majority of states across the nation. In total, there were more than 70 math experts on the development and feedback team for the math standards, and 25 of them came from some of the most respected universities in the country.
18. Are the New Generation Science Standards (NGSS) at a lower level than our current science standards?
The NGSS do not lower the standard of science, but they raise the bar. They lift science from an afterthought, art project or pullout in most elementary classrooms to a legitimate part of daily instruction. Science knowledge and skill is not an accessory but just as important as reading, writing, and math knowledge and skill. In the 6th – 12th grades, the science is integrated with problem solving. Learning no longer ends at memorizing vocabulary, labeling diagrams, or completing charts. It requires integration of knowledge, design, creation, and innovation.
The NGSS are far more sophisticated than the previous science standards. The content required before is still there, but is implied often as background knowledge for students to demonstrate the required skills of the NGSS. The NGSS require students to apply the content they are learning and in this regard are not only much richer and much deeper, but also much higher level.
The NGSS were created in a two-step process. The National Research Council (NRC), the staff arm of the National Academic of Science began by developing a K-12 Science Framework, grounded in the most current research on science and science learning. The committee was composed of practicing scientists, including two Nobel laureates, cognitive scientists, science education researchers, and science education standards and policy experts. In addition, there were design teams representing the fields of life science, physical science, earth/space science, and engineering, which each developed the framework for their respective sciences. The final draft of this framework as released in 2011 after public review and feedback. Using this framework, States worked to develop the NGSS – working the content across disciplines and grade levels. The Standards underwent multiple reviews with many stakeholders, including the public, higher education faculty, scientists, engineers, and K-12 educators, providing feedback. The goal of the process was to create robust, forward looking science standards that all states could use as a guide for teaching and learning science over the next decade, standards that were better aligned with the expectations of colleges and careers.
The previous science standards require a large amount of rote memorization of scientific vocabulary and fact. The standards are worded with the “students know” beginning. They are not “students do”. The students were not previous required to do anything with the content knowledge, per the standards; most often just regurgitate back facts. There were some calculations and a few relationships but the science was being taught in silos, separate unrelated concepts.
19. What is the District budgeted reserve, what is the statewide average reserve and is the District concerned about the difference?
As of November, 2013, the 2013-14 general fund budgeted reserve is 9.4%. State certified data for 2011-12 (the most recent data available) shows the average reserve for unified districts in California was 15.44% at that time. Our District's general fund reserve at the conclusion of 2011-12 was 11.81%. There are many statewide factors and unique district characteristics that must be considered when determining what level of reserves are needed. With the passage of Proposition 30 in November 2012, an improving State economy and increased funding for schools, improvements in on-time cash payments from the State to schools and the resolution of our District's general fund structural deficit, fewer reserves are needed now as compared to the more volatile period spanning the past several years.
20. Can the District simply not accept the $6.1 million in State funds to implement CC?
While accepting the $6.1 million for CC implementation is not mandatory, all districts must develop a Local Control and Accountability Plan (LCAP) as part of the new K-12 funding system called the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF). The LCFF was enacted via AB 97 along with the 2013-14 State budget. The LCAP must address the state priorities contained in the new law which include implementation of CC Standards. In addition, the LCAP requires student achievement be improved over time as measured, in part by statewide assessments which will be aligned with the CC Academic Standards. Failure to fully implement the LCAP or failure to improve student outcomes over time could ultimately result in Superintendent of Public Instruction (State) intervention and loss of local control of our school district.
21. Can the $6.1 million be spent in other areas?
No, the $6.1 Million is earmarked specifically for the implementation of the Common Core and must be used for professional development, instructional materials and technology.
22. Is CC unproven and untested? Or is there evidence that it works?
The Common Core State Standards were written by building on the best and highest state standards in existence in the U.S., examining the expectations of other high performing countries around the world, and careful study of the research and literature available on what students need to know and be able to do to be successful in college and careers. No state in the country was asked to lower their expectations for their students in adopting the Common Core. The Standards are evidence-based, aligned with college and work expectations, include rigorous content and skills, and are informed by other top performing countries. They were developed in consultation with teachers and parents from across the country so they are also realistic and practical for the classroom.
23. Are Smarter Balanced assessments given every quarter? Who pays for these assessments?
Twice a year interim/benchmark assessments are available for districts to use to support teaching and learning. This will inform the teaching so that students are prepared and most successful when they take the summative assessment (SBAC) at the end of the year. The State of California funds all assessments.
24. What would be our budget for CC after the one-time funding – past, current, future?
Moving forward, all work that is done to improve our curriculum/instruction/assessment will be supported by the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF), our local control funding. As we do currently, all of these are supportive of the District efforts occurring now with the District budget. Funding for things such as professional development to support high quality teaching, materials for instructional purposes, assessments for instruction are all woven into the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF).
25. Will the $68/student amount for technology be enough to get all of our sites ready for CC requirements?
The District and school sites will continue to provide ongoing technical support and sustain a continuous, annual technology refresh cycle in all schools to support Common Core learning environments.
The $68/Student will allow each school site to collaborate with Technology and Educational Services to develop an effective plan for the funds based on their individual needs. These may include one-time funds for basic upgrades to usable, older equipment, new equipment to supplement existing inventories, and additional tech support to prepare for and administer online assessments.
26. Are there resources available to send teachers to training?
Yes, Common Core Implementation Plan allows for training for staff. The plan, developed by SRVUSD stakeholders, provides funding for professional development.
27. Will you be asking parents to donate funding to pay for CC after the one-time State money is spent?
No. After CC is initially implemented, it will become part of our ongoing District program. The one-time State funds are intended to assist districts with one-time transition costs associated with implementing the new standards.
With or without these new standards, school districts will always have ongoing costs for instructional materials, personnel, staff development, technology as well as many other support services.
28. Do parents, students, and teachers have no control over what is being tested when local control is removed?
As with previous years, State-mandated assessments will continue to be designed at the State level and reflect State-adopted. School districts have never developed or set their own assessments that are reported to the State.