September 6, 2012
As you may have seen from a number of media outlets this week, millions of students and teachers are back to school, and the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) are now a reality in countless classrooms across the country. Many hardworking teachers and curriculum experts have spent months strategizing and revising their lesson plans to align to the new math and English language arts standards, while district leaders have engaged in outreach and education to the larger community. Creating rigorous standards and training teachers and administrators on these changes is not an easy task. However, a growing number of school districts around the country are proving that effective implementation of the Common Core is possible. Collaboration within school districts and across sectors appears to be one of the keys to success, as these examples show:
Bennington, VT – The Southwest Vermont Supervisory Union held a back to school meeting where they invited teachers, support staff, business leaders and community members to share their thoughts on “what students should know in order to be ready for college or the work force,” including a push from business leaders on “employability skills such as work ethic and professionalism.”
Farmington, MI – Even though implementation is not scheduled until 2015-2016, the Oakland Schools Intermediate District has been working hard to bring “together curriculum coordinators from all 28 school districts” to create new lesson plans “to build off one another’s work and also to be able to learn from things that have not gone well.”
Knox County, TN – Having already implemented the CCSS math and English language arts standards for children in grades, K-2, Knox County “will roll out a partial implementation of the math standards for grades three through eight this school year.”
What implementation stories have you seen in the news? Have any to tell from your district? Share them with us!