Friday, March 14, 2014

Who Wrote Those Standards, Anyway?

Maybe it's just my nearly three decades trying to parse individual state standards that makes me appreciate the Common Core Standards. Maybe it's that I love an underdog when it's being attacked by the fangs of misinformation. At last night's Bill Daggett event at IHS, a parent rose to spread the left-wing gospel* about CCSS—that educators had nothing to do with its construction, that it was a money-making construct by big business, led by Achieve, Inc. Well, Achieve is the organization created by the governors and state superintendents to lead the standards project. It was founded as a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization. Its board includes governors and captains of industry, its staff includes curricular experts and content advisors, but the people who did the work are mostly educators from the field, from both the K-12 and college levels. This list is easy to find; I have no idea why this myth of "no educators involved" continues to filter through the cyberscape.

—*Right-wing complaints concern the loss of local control (a myth, as every state already had its own standards), the federal takeover of schools (confusing CCSS with NCLB or RTTT), and the unfairness of increased rigor. Left-wing complaints have mostly to do with tying standards to accountability of teachers, overuse of assessment, and the corporate takeover of schools (as though there never was a multimillion-dollar textbook industry). Both sides complain about the suddenness of it all, as though seven years were but a blink of the eye. Most of the complaints could have been avoided by a decent rollout and much better use of the media. Shades of Obamacare.

LATER: It's worth pointing out that thousands more teachers were involved in the vetting process—on the draft analysis teams; via NCTE, NEA, AFT, and NCTM; and as part of the public comment periods (along with parents and others). Far more teachers were involved with the creation of CCSS than with the creation of the rather wretched and confusing NYS Standards or any other state's standards that I'm aware of.

1 comment:

Diane said...

You know, I'd sort of just believed that there were no educators involved. WHY is this idea out there? You should post this link everywhere.